Young hopefuls chase higher-paying GBA jobs
A job expo providing over 3,000 vacancies in the Greater Bay Area under the government's GBA youth employment scheme was held at Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre in Wan Chai yesterday.
Job seekers said they are looking for GBA opportunities as the salaries are higher.
Some 30 job seekers queued outside the exhibition hall before the job expo opened at 11am, and hundreds tried their luck in the one-day event.
The fair gathered about 35 companies, offering over 1,200 vacancies in the catering, retail and hotel sectors, with monthly salaries ranging between HK$12,000 and HK$23,000.
Around 20 mainland employers in the GBA youth employment scheme offered some 400 vacancies for local fresh graduates.
Earlier this month, authorities regularized the scheme, where in an employers in GBA can get a monthly subsidy of HK$10,000 for up to 18 months if they hire a local fresh graduate for a salary of HK$18,000 a month.
Among the job seekers, a local university final-year student said he found at least one-third of the job vacancies attractive. \"There is a teacher position in Guangzhou to teach non-local students there. They will offer me a dormitory and meals, so I found it quite attractive," he said.
"I am also a non-local, so I think I can share my experience with the students there."
A Hong Kong girl who graduated from a mainland university said salaries under the scheme are much higher than those offered in the mainland.
"I looked at many offers in the mainland, but most of them were offering only a few thousand yuan for fresh graduates," she said.
An employer of an accounting firm said she would like to meet as many job seekers as possible at the expo, despite the company having received dozens of applications. "It will be most ideal if we can meet the applicants in person and it's quite different from only looking at their resumes," she said.
Speaking at the event's kick-off ceremony, Secretary for Labour and Welfare Chris Sun Yuk-han described the scheme as his baby, saying Hong Kong youth have unlimited opportunities if they are willing to work in GBA.
"If we say the scheme is a baby, then I think I have taken part in giving birth to this baby," Sun said.
"After our pilot scheme, we received great support from corporations, as well as young people and mainland cities in the GBA."
Although the scheme is expected to help around 1,000 fresh graduates every year, there are challenges. The Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions' Greater Bay Area Community Services heard an employee was asked to return HK$8,000 back to her employer to secure a job. The victim sought help from the Labour Department and successfully got back her original salary, while the company has been banned from participating in the scheme.