A vicious jobs-skills circle

Just a read a nice report in rediff.com (http://www.rediff.com/money/2007/jul/02guest.htm) about Employment Outlook for 2007 from Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The first chapter of the report compares and contrasts the recent history of employment patterns in the four large economies that have come to be collectively known as the BRICs — Brazil, Russia, India and China

Major points listed were

One, during the period 2000-05, India generated about 11 million jobs per year, about 50 per cent of the total jobs generated in the BRICs. In contrast to the 22 million jobs generated in these four economies every year, the 31 members of the OECD together generated about 3.7 million jobs per year.

Two, the overwhelming majority of jobs in India are in the informal or unorganised sector. About 85 per cent of jobs in the economy are informal in nature and over 94 per cent of the jobs are in unorganised enterprises, i.e. those which are outside regulatory and fiscal scrutiny.

Three, the participation of women in the workforce is relatively low. Among urban women, it was about 24 per cent of the potential in 2005; by contrast, the other three BRICs economies registered above 60 per cent on this parameter. Over 70 per cent of urban Chinese women participated in the workforce.

Four, the proportion of Indians acquiring even secondary education is relatively small. Less than 12 per cent of the Indian population have attained this distinction, although there are some indications that younger people have had better access to schools. Even then, only about 21 per cent of people now in their early 20s have cleared secondary school.

This report shows India is still far from being called developed…


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