69 Percent of Jobs in India Threatened by Automation: World Bank

If developing countries are going to lose these many jobs the path of economic growth for them need to be understood

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Jim Yong Kim (right) talking about ending poverty at the Brookings Institute. (Photo Courtesy: Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/JimYongKim">@JimYongKim</a>)

Automation threatens 69 per cent of the jobs in India, while 77 per cent in China, according to a World Bank research, which has said that technology could fundamentally disrupt the pattern of traditional economic path in developing countries.

As we continue to encourage more investment in infrastructure to promote growth, we also have to think about the kinds of infrastructure that countries will need in the economy of the future. We all know that technology has and will continue to fundamentally reshape the world.
Jim Kim, World Bank President

When asked about extreme poverty, this is what the president said:

But the traditional economic path from increasing productivity of agriculture to light manufacturing and then to full-scale industrialisation may not be possible for all developing countries.

"Research based on World Bank data has predicted that the proportion of jobs threatened in India by automation is 69 per cent, in China it is 77 per cent and in Ethiopia, the percentage of jobs threatened by automation is 85 per cent," he said.

Now, if this is true, and if these countries are going to lose these many jobs, we then have to understand what paths to economic growth will be available for these countries and then adapt our approach to infrastructure accordingly.

He said one child policy could have been the reason of sharp decline in child stunting and malnutrition, which is now at 10 per cent.

The one child policy could have been part of it, but anyway the point is, that if you look at educational outcomes and things like child stunting, India is at 38.7 per cent child stunting, they are literally walking into the future with 40 per cent of their workforce probably being unable to compete in the global digital economy, whereas China over the years has brought it down very, very low.

"In India, it is probably partly because of sanitation that children are often in a just constant diarrheal stage, because of open defecation. There is a lot of different pieces of it. But I have been saying to the leaders of these countries that have these high stunting rates, like there is an emergency for you. You have got to tackle it," Kim said.

(With inputs from PTI)

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