New Delhi: India can wipe out unemployment by 2010 with a sustained economic growth of 8% and the feat could be achieved even earlier if the GDP grows at a higher level, the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Council said on 16 July.
“It is seen that with a GDP growth rate of 8%, by 2010 the workforce (number of employed people) will become equal to the labour force (number of employable people),” the EAC, which submitted its economic outlook report for 2007-08 to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, said.
The EAC, headed by former RBI Governor C Rangarajan and comprising noted economists like Saumitra Choudhary, concluded that the days of “jobless growth” were over.
“Economic growth has been a major driving force in achieving a higher level of employment,” it said. However, it remained concerned over the quality of employment since there is a skill mismatch that needs to be addressed “in order to enable a smooth transfer of employment from agriculture to the secondary and tertiary sectors of the economy”.
Asked whether the entire workforce would be given employment in the next three years, Rangarajan said it would be so but he would not commit on the kind of income earned by the additional workforce.
“In physical terms, employment would increase but the quest for quality will remain a concern,” he said.
According to the EAC report, the challenge was how to improve productivity in the informal sector and in agriculture so that quality of employment was upgraded.