Digital labour platforms and national employment policies in China: Studying the case of food delivery platforms

Submitted by pmassetti on

ILO Working paper (Dec 2023) This paper takes food-delivery platforms as a case study in China to examine the impact of digital labour platforms on employment and presents findings in employment structure, employment relations, working conditions, wages, protection of workers and social insurance in the food-delivery sector. The study reviewed the deteriorated employment situation in China during the COVID-19 pandemic, an increased proportion of workers joining the digital platform economies such as ride-hailing, delivery and domestic work, the disruptions in production, business operations (particularly in the accommodation and catering sectors), and labour mobility that contributed to the influx of workers from other service sectors to food-delivery sector. The key characteristics of platform employment in the food-delivery sector and challenges in China’s national employment policies and regulations of digital labour platforms reflected how the national employment policies in China has evolved in the specific context and offered an insight into the barriers and possible pathways toward the inclusive and sustainable development with full, productive, and freely chosen employment and decent work for all. The paper concludes with suggestions on how to promote decent employment in the platform economy beyond the traditional national employment policy frameworks.

Measure date
Regions / Country
Document Type