By 2015, India will need 30 mn more skilled workers

By 2015, India will need 30 mn more skilled workers

New Delhi: India requires at least 30 million additional skilled workers in sectors such as health care, banking and financial services, retail, auto and construction by 2015, according to industry lobby, Confederation of Indian Industry, or CII.

These sectors employ about 40 million skilled workers.

Construction is expected to create 13-15 million jobs in the next seven years, up 39% from 33 million it employed in 2007, according to a set of sectoral reports prepared by CII.

Of the 30 million, around one million jobs will be for engineers and project managers, and another one million for skilled technicians. “According to our estimates, with supply of manpower growing at 4%, there would be a shortage of around 1.6 million skilled persons," the study claims.

At least 4.5 million new jobs are expected to be created in the banking services sector by then, says the study, suggesting that with 135 million domestic households not having access to banking services, there is a large expansion opportunity for the sector.

However, the quality of graduates now employed with the sector is poor, with more than 58% organizations in the segment finding it difficult to find relevant staff.

The study also expects workers in the organized retail sector to rise by three times in seven years to six million.

The Planning Commission has already projected that 70 million skilled jobs will be created across sectors between 2007 and 2012.

“We are urging industries to devote money that they set aside for corporate social responsibilities for skill development," said B. Santhanam, chairman of CII’s national committee on skills, human resources and industrial relations. “In order to improve employability of weaker sections, we are also suggesting that the private sector extend skill development facilities to scheduled castes and tribes."

The government has been asking the private sector to reserve some positions for the so-called scheduled castes and scheduled tribes in their organizations.

The government has set up a National Skill Development Corp., or NSDC, whose first meeting was held in August. It will be a private sector-led entity and attempt to stimulate and coordinate private sector initiatives in skill development.

The authorized capital of the NSDC has been fixed at Rs10 crore, 51% of which will come from private sector organizations and the rest from the Centre. Private sector representatives are also expected to have a majority in NSDC’s board of directors.

In the 2008-09 Union budget, the government announced setting up of a national skill development mission to train people to join skilled jobs. Since then, the Centre has been working on a skill development policy.

“The final draft of the national skill development policy is expected to be placed before the cabinet for its approval soon," said Oscar Fernandes, minister of state for labour and employment.