Young Chinese don’t want to work in factories, says electronics boss

Many young people in China are rejecting factory work and would prefer to find jobs in the services sector or other industries, according to Terry Gou, head of the Taiwanese contract electronics manufacturer Foxconn.

As The Telegraph reports, Gou expressed these views at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum which is currently taking place on the Indonesian island of Bali.

“Many workers are moving to the services sector and, in the manufacturing sector, total demand [for workers] is now more than supply,” Gou said.

According to Gou, the movement of migrant workers from poor rural villages in central and western China to factories along the country’s southeastern coast, which began in the 1980s, is starting to slow. 

Although that demographic trend has not stopped all together, the numbers of people heading to jobs in the South East has fallen. Apart from the job expectations of the young, the trend can also be explained by the government’s desire to develop industry within the country’s interior.

For example, Foxconn itself has been moving its operations from the southeastern city of Shenzhen to inland provinces such as Sichuan and Henan. In such areas there is a larger supply of cheap labour.

As Focus Taiwan reports, Gou also outlined his company’s business model at APEC. 

Foxconn employs a model it calls ‘Integration Innovation Design Manufacture’ (IIDM). As Gou explained, the model places an emphasis on integrated innovation as a key capability in the cuurent age of technological change.

He added that Foxconn aims to develop computer and communication products with “smart content”, smart medical systems and contribute to the building of smart cities that are connected to 4th-generation or even newer communication technologies.