In China, many migrant workers move to the city to earn more money and escape rural poverty. It can also be a chance to find new opportunities. Liu Hong Liang is a manager working for an engineering parts firm. The firm has undergone major expansion which Hong Liang puts down to government policy, a boss with excellent business management skills and a united, positive workforce. The manager has introduced a reward and punishment system with successful workers receiving bonuses and poor workers having their pay docked. Hong Liang says this has had a positive effect on the workforce and the business. About once a week, Hong Liang leaves the dormitory he shares with his co-workers and travels to his rural home thirty miles away. While there he works on his parents' farm. He left the farm to improve life for himself and his family and to see more of the world. By moving away he feels he can contribute more to his family by saving money for his parents. Although he sometimes thinks of moving to a larger city, Hong Liang feels he lacks the education to do so. He also feels he will return to his rural home when he grows older.
Could provides a case study on the push and pull factors associated with migrant labour in China. It provides a discussion starter for the similarities and differences to working practices in the UK. It also provides a comparison to the push and pull factors within the EU, if students have studied this already.