Skip to main content

Where the jobs are: on the unemployment rate (hindu)

Public spending and economic policy need to be more attuned to employment creation

News reports over the last few weeks suggest that the Central government may finally be starting to think seriously about jobs. Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramaniam recently pointed to the need to achieve higher economic growth, in the range of 8% to 10%, to solve the problem of jobless growth. In particular, he flagged the underperformance of the information technology, construction and agricultural sectors, which earlier served as huge job-creators for the economy. It is worth noting that India added just 1.35 lakh jobs in eight labour-intensive sectors in 2015, compared to the 9.3 lakh jobs that were created in 2011, according to Labour Bureau figures. The rate of unemployment grew steadily from 3.8% in 2011-12 to 5% in 2015-16. Union Labour and Employment Minister Bandaru Dattatreya has downplayed the gloomy job situation as being a temporary one. His focus instead is on the new National Employment Policy which, he says, would be released later this year and focus on shifting jobs from the informal to the formal sector. NITI Aayog too has dismissed concerns over jobless growth, saying the real problem is underemployment rather than unemployment. Nevertheless, this month the government set up a high-level task force headed by NITI Aayog Vice-Chairman Arvind Panagariya to obtain reliable data on employment trends to aid policymaking.

The focus on jobs is obviously vital. However, higher economic growth alone will not solve the jobs problem. Jobs can be created when growth comes from the transition of labour from informal sectors like agriculture to the more formal manufacturing and service sectors. Such extensive growth, however, runs the risk of stagnation once the available stock of informal labour is exhausted — as some Southeast Asian countries found out the hard way in the late 1990s. On the other hand, growth can come about without any substantial job-creation in the formal sectors of the economy, but through improvements in productivity. The growth record of several developed economies even after the modernisation of their labour force explains such intensive growth. India should aim at growth that is driven both by improvements in productivity and modernisation of its labour force — especially since better jobs are crucial to improving the lives of millions who are employed, indeed underemployed, in low-paying jobs in the farm sector. Ironically, achieving both those objectives will first require labour reforms — ones that can both boost labour mobility within the formal sector and bring down the barriers businesses face in hiring labour. But incremental labour reforms alone won’t work unless these are combined with a step-up in government spending on asset and job-creating areas such as infrastructure, which in turn inspires private investment. Job-creation needs to be an essential axis along which economic and social policies are formulated.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Cloud seeding

Demonstrating the function of the flare rack that carries silver iodide for cloud-seeding through an aircraft. 
Water is essential for life on the earth. Precipitation from the skies is the only source for it. India and the rest of Asia are dependent on the monsoons for rains. While the South West Monsoon is the main source for India as a whole, Tamil Nadu and coastal areas of South Andhra Pradesh get the benefit of the North East Monsoon, which is just a less dependable beat on the reversal of the South West Monsoon winds.

SC asks Centre to strike a balance on Rohingya issue (.hindu)

Supreme Court orally indicates that the government should not deport Rohingya “now” as the Centre prevails over it to not record any such views in its formal order, citing “international ramifications”.

The Supreme Court on Friday came close to ordering the government not to deport the Rohingya.

It finally settled on merely observing that a balance should be struck between humanitarian concern for the community and the country's national security and economic interests.

The court was hearing a bunch of petitions, one filed by persons within the Rohingya community, against a proposed move to deport over 40,000 Rohingya refugees. A three-judge Bench, led by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, began by orally indicating that the government should not deport Rohingya “now”, but the government prevailed on the court to not pass any formal order, citing “international ramifications”. With this, the status quo continues even though the court gave the community liberty to approach it in …

Indian Polity Elections (MCQ )

1. Who of the following has the responsibility of the registration of voters
a) Individual voters
b) Government
c) Election commission
d) Corporations


2. Democracy exists in India, without peoples participation and co operation democracy will fail. This implies that
a) Government should compel people to participate and cooperate with it
b) People from the government
c) People should participate and cooperate with the government
d) India should opt for the presidential system


3. Which of the following are not the functions of the election commission
1) Conduct of election for the post of the speaker and the deputy speaker, Lok sabha and the deputy chairman, Rajya sabha
2) Conduct of elections to the state legislative assemblies
3) Deciding on all doubts and disputes arising out of elections

a) 1 and 2
b) 1 and 3
c) 2 and 3
d) 2

4. Which of the following electoral systems have not been adopted for various elections in India
1) System of direct elections on the basis of adult suffrage
2…