VietNamNet Bridge – Unlike previous years, the labor markets in Hanoi remain quiet, though Tet comes in just three months.
Year end is the time for the laborers from other provinces to flock to Hanoi to seek part time jobs to earn money for Tet celebration. The laborers gather in some places in Hanoi, generating the labor markets in the city. The jobs could be cleaning houses, repairing machines and equipments, polishing shoes or taking care for babies.
Thirsty for jobs
The labor market the Mai Dich overpass opens very early in the morning with laborers flocking there to wait for jobs. They are all from other provinces, who come to look for jobs to earn their living during the leisure time after the harvest time.
The laborers need to be as agile as monkeys to scramble with others for jobs. Urbanites tend to choose workers by chance; therefore, the most dynamic laborers would obtain the jobs.
Thom, a laborer at the market, complained that she has been cooling her heels here for one week, but she still has not found any job.
Thom is from Nam Dinh province. She said that she always has to work hard to feed the two children, while her husband died. However, the rice field could not bring enough money for basic needs. Therefore, she has to leave the children at the grandparents after the harvesting and go to Hanoi to take some extra jobs.
At first, Thom worked as a porter at the Dong Xuan Market, the biggest wholesale market in Hanoi. However, Thom has not got many jobs recently, so she has decided to join the Mai Dich overpass market.
Thom said she would take any jobs available to earn money. “I don’t know how I can earn my living if I cannot find jobs in the next days,” Thom said. “It seems that urbanites nowadays tend to work themselves instead of hiring workers. They may try to save money in the current big economic difficulties.”
Other labor markets in the city have also been quiet these days. Hinh, a man from Dan Phuong district in Hanoi said that he hoped urbanites now begin decorating their houses to celebrate Tet, so he could get some jobs. However, “I cannot understand why it is so quiet now at the time of the year,” he said.
Hinh seemed to be luckier than Thom, because he could earn 90,000 dong from a job yesterday. However, he complained that he has spent 45,000 dong on meals already, which means that he cannot save much money for his family members who are still in the home village and expecting the money from him.
When asked why Hinh does not think of returning to the home village, if there are few jobs in the city, he said he believes lucky days are still ahead, because the demand would be higher on the days closer to Tet holidays.
Phuong, a woman from Phu Tho province, also said she would not return to the home village. “My husband and I both are now in Hanoi. My husband is working for a construction site. We will try to stay here to earn more money to grow my two children,” Phuong said, though she complained that she has not been given any jobs over the last week.
Where to get money to celebrate Tet?
The immigrant workers thought that there are many jobs awaiting them in the city, since urbanites would need workers to help them clean houses and decorate homes for Tet celebration. However, the job opportunities have not appeared yet.
Sy from Thai Binh said he has got too tired of waiting for jobs here in Hanoi. His wife is lucky enough when getting a job washing dishes at a street rice shop, while he still has not been hired so far. Therefore, the couple has been living on the wife’s money these days.
“I have only spent money and I have not earned money so far since I arrived in Hanoi,” he complained.