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ILO Report Highlights Grim Employment Scenario in India

The International Labour Organization (ILO) in collaboration with the Institute of Human Development (IHD) has released the ‘India Employment Report 2024,’ shedding light on the challenges faced by the Indian job market as the financial year comes to a close. Chief Economic Adviser V. Anantha Nageswaran unveiled the report, which outlines significant shifts in employment patterns and trends in education levels among the unemployed, spanning two decades up to 2022.

India Employment Report 2024: Key Findings

1. Surge in Unemployed Youth with Higher Education:

  • The share of unemployed youth with secondary or higher education has nearly doubled from 35.2% in 2000 to 65.7% in 2022.
  • Youths now constitute nearly 83% of the country’s unemployed workforce.

2. Pandemic Impact on Employment:

  • Despite a consistent increase in employment and underemployment from 2000 to 2019, the years of the pandemic witnessed a decline.
  • Long-term deterioration in key labour market indicators until 2018, followed by a post-2019 improvement coinciding with economic distress periods, is noted.

3. Quality and Sustainability of Jobs:

  • The report raises questions about the quality and sustainability of jobs created during economic slowdowns, despite improvements in labour market indicators.
  • The paradoxical nature of India’s employment scenario over the past two decades is highlighted, indicating insufficient growth in non-farm sectors to absorb agricultural workers.

4. Challenges in Employment Transformation:

  • The report underscores ongoing challenges in transforming India’s employment landscape, despite some positive indicators.
  • Manufacturing, which needs to employ more people, has not grown as strongly as services, leaving approximately 90% of workers informally employed.

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