Budget 2018 FAQ: How Can Govt Address the Unemployment Problem?

BloombergQuint’s Pradeep Pandya talks about unemployment and the significance of the issue in this year’s Budget.

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As Finance Minister Arun Jaitley prepares to present the BJP-led NDA government's last Budget before the Lok Sabha elections on 1 February, the issue of high unemployment rates has reared its head yet again.

A number of taxpayers The Quint spoke to had the same set of questions: Why is it that jobs are not being created despite promises every year? Why is the growth in the number of jobs not being able to keep up with the growth in population?

Asserting that unemployment has haunted India ever since Independence, BloombergQuint's Pradeep Pandya talks about the issue and its significance in the Budget in a simplified manner, with easy-to-relate real life examples.

As per the latest estimates of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the unemployment rate in India in 2018 stands at 3.5 percent, up from the earlier estimate of 3.4 percent.

The ILO report estimated the same 3.5 percent rate for 2017 as well as 2019.
In absolute terms, it is projected that there will be 18.6 million jobless people in India in 2018, which would increase to 18.9 million in 2019. Alarmingly, according to Economic Times, unemployment rate in the age group of 15-24 years is estimated at 10.5 percent.

The figures come in the backdrop of Prime Minister Narendra Modi asserting, in an interview to a television channel, that employment generation has been on track.

Meanwhile, the Economic Survey, which was tabled on 29 January and predicted India’s GDP growth to be 7-7.5 percent in 2018-19, considered employment, along with education and agriculture to be the focus areas for the medium term.

The survey, however, stated that a lack of clear job and employment data doesn't allow for an estimate of job creation and whether the government has fulfilled its promises of job creation. But the survey did add that new data points to an increase in jobs in the formal sector.

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