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Beijing Mulls Special Allowance for Skilled Workers

Skilled workers in Beijing will soon receive a government stipend, a benefit formerly reserved for outstanding experts and scholars, a local government official said Tuesday.

The allowance will be given to 100 outstanding skilled workers selected every two years from enterprises in the capital, Yang Decheng, a municipal government official, said.

He gave no details of how much the allowance would be.

Other preferential policies, such as citizenship registration priority, would be given to technicians in high-tech industry, construction and manufacture and other pillar industries, he said.

"This measure is expected to relieve a shortage of skilled workers in the city and enhance technical skills and productivity," Yang said.

Zhu Yue, a young car industry technician, called the allowance encouraging. "It's good to know a blue-collar worker can also be granted government allowance, which used to be a privilege reserved for professors and researchers."

(Xinhua News Agency December 6, 2007)

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