(GIST OF YOJANA) Job Creation: Challenges & Way Forward - August - 2017

(GIST OF YOJANA) Job Creation: Challenges & Way Forward - August - 2017

India has the world's largest youth population comprising around one-fifth of the total world youth population. Indian youth can contribute to higher economic growth if properly absorbed in the labour market. More than half (60.3 per cent) of India's population falls within the 'working' age category of 15-59 years and about a quarter (27.5 per cent) in the 'youth' category of 15-29 years (Census of India, 2011). The youth population in India has grown at a higher rate annually (2 per cent) compared to overall rate of growth of population (1.6 per cent) between 2001 and 2011. India, as a result, adds around 10 million young people to the labour market every year.

The Indian government has introduced a number of employment generation schemes to address this problem, such as, Prime Minister Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP), Swaranajayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojna (SGSY), SwarnaJayanti Shahari Rozgar Yojna (SJSRY), 'Make in India' and 'Skill India'.
Worker Participation Rate (WPR) denotes the proportion of workers employed persons to total population In 2015-16, WPR for the youth was 39.2 as against WPR of 57.3 for the older age group of 30 years and above. This is expected a significant proportion of person belonging to 18-29 years also attend educational institution.

Around two-fifth of the workers aged 18-29 years were self-employed, as against around half for the workers above age of 30 years.
The industrial distribution of workers shows that the majority of persons in the age category of 18-29 years were employed in agriculture and allied activities (38.1 per cent) followed by trade, hotel and restaurant (19.4 per cent), construction (15.1 per cent), manufacturing (13.1 per cent) and other services. A comparison with the older age group of30 years and above shows that younger people are joining non-agricultural sectors such as construction, manufacturing and trade and related activities in greater numbers.

Unemployment rate is the proportion of persons who were available for work but did not get work and are still seeking work. The unemployment rate for the youth belonging aged 18-29 years during 2015-16 was 13.2 per cent which was more than 8 times the unemployment rate of workers aged 30+ years (1.6 per cent). The unemployment rate for young females in the youth category was 20.0 per cent which is almost double that of young males (11.3 per cent). Unemployment is higher in urban than in rural areas and for females compared to males. The unemployment rate among young females in urban areas is alarmingly high at 28 per cent for young males it was 11.5 per cent.

Unemployment among educated youth is becoming increasingly more acute as the level of unemployment among youth rises with increase in the level of education. Unemployment is, 23 per cent among youth having a certificate course at undergraduate level or having diploma at graduate level, which increases to around 35 per cent for those who complete their graduate degree and above.

More than one-third of educated females aged 18-29 years, having completed certificate course or diploma degrees at undergraduate and graduate levels are unemployed. The situation is acute for young women who are graduate and above - the unemployment rate in this category is around 48 per cent. This means that the Indian labour market is not only creating inadequate jobs, but that discrimination prevails against females in recruitment and hiring practices in the labour market.
The government has initiated 'The Start-up India' and 'Stand-up India' in January, 2016 to encourage entrepreneurship by providing assistance such as tax benefits and a mega start-up fund of Rs 10,000 crores. The government has also taken various measures to improve the ease of doing business by building an enabling environment for Stand-ups by initiating a liberal approach in registration, legal formalities, regulatory control, tax concession, etc. India had about 4,700 Stand-ups by December, 2016. However, these schemes have not been able to provide the desired results as over 200 Stand-ups initiated have closed down within a year. Although it is argued that this is a natural progression and not more than 20 per cent of the Stand-ups survive a highly competitive market (India start-up outlook report, 2017), there is a need to pay more attention to the attribution rate.

The government also launched the Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana (PMMY) in April, 2015, to provide access to institutional finance to micro/small business units. Under the PMMY three kinds of loans can be sanctioned which signify the stage of growth/development and funding needs of the unit - Shishu (Rs 50,000), Kishor (Rs 50,000 to Rs 5,00,000), and Tarun, (Rs 5,00,000 to Rs 10,00,000). The total amount of loans disbursed under the PMMY programme crossed Rs. 1.25 trillion as of March 2016. Out of 32.7 million borrowers, 30.3 million borrowers were in the Shishu category.

In order to promote entrepreneurship in rural areas, the government is planning to launch the "Start-up Village Entrepreneurship Programme" (SVEP). The objective of the SVEP is to energize and streamline economic growth by providing necessary thrust from the grass roots, i. e. villages, towards creation of sustainable self employment opportunities. SVEP is expected to support creation and strengthening of about 1.82 lakh village enterprises in 125 blocks across 24 States in four years i.e. 2015-19. This is expected to create employment for about 3.78 lakh persons. This program can do much to enhance entrepreneurial opportunities for the growing number of rural youth if implemented properly.

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