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15 Million Livestreamers In China May Soon Get Government Recognition

China is considering officially recognizing livestreaming as an occupation, a move that could grant the country’s estimated 15 million livestreamers access to government support and benefits, Channel News Asia (CNA) reports.

On May 24, China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security released a list of 19 professions it plans to recognize, including “livestream host formally.” The list was open for public review until June 7, after which amendments may be made before the occupations are added to the official roll.

According to the ministry’s proposed definition, a livestream host is “engaged in real-time broadcasting or interactive services through means such as audio, video, and graphic information.” Seven listed job scopes include scripting broadcast content.

While some expressed skepticism online, the ministry states that recognizing new occupations allows practitioners to “benefit from relevant national policies while also enhancing employment.” Formally recognized jobs grant workers access to benefits like vocational training, skills certification, and subsidies.

According to CNA, China has been regularly revising its official list of professions over the past decade as its economy evolves. The latest 2022 version featured 1,636 professions, around 400 fewer than the earliest 1999 edition.

“When the occupation becomes legit, the authorities will monitor tax collection more closely,” said Liu Erduo, a labor expert at the China Institute for Employment Research. He added it could reduce unemployment by moving livestreamers “out of the grey area.”

The CNA reports that China aims to create over 12 million new urban jobs this year while keeping the urban surveyed unemployment rate around 5.5%. Youth unemployment remains at 14.7% for those aged 16-24 as of April.

Some current livestreamers welcome the proposed recognition. Qian Yongjing, who has 5 million fans, believes it could improve livestream quality through tighter regulations. Chen, a 30-year-old host, hopes inappropriate content will be removed to make livestreams safer for children to view.

The ministry also proposed recognizing 29 new work classifications, such as providing shower assistance for seniors and coffee roasting. Ski resort staff look forward to more targeted hiring for niche snow sports roles.

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Cecilia Carloni, Interview Manager at Influence Weekly and writer for NetInfluencer. Coming from beautiful Argentina, Ceci has spent years chatting with big names in the influencer world, making friends and learning insider info along the way. When she’s not deep in interviews or writing, she's enjoying life with her two daughters. Ceci’s stories give a peek behind the curtain of influencer life, sharing the real and interesting tales from her many conversations with movers and shakers in the space.

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