The World Bank has forecast an optimistic picture of India’s economic growth, thanks to its recovery in private investment and consumption, but expressed concern over a decline in female participation in the workforce.
In its South Asia Economic Focus, the World Bank sees growth of 7.3% this year for India and 7.5% for 2019 and 2020. It said the Indian economy had recovered from the disruption caused by demonetization of high-value currency notes in 2016 and the Goods and Services Tax, reports Press Trust of India.
The bank exhorted India to accelerate investments and exports to take advantage of the recovery in global growth, saying eight million jobs needed to be created every year to make up for the number of women who leave the job market.
“Every month, the workforce increases by 1.3 million people and India must create 8.1 million jobs a year to maintain its employment rate, which has been declining based on employment data analyzed from 2005 to 2015, largely due to women leaving the job market.”
It said the female employment rate dropped by 5% per year in India in 2005-2015, whereas male employment rate decreased marginally.
Labour force participation rate is defined as the number of people looking for a job as a proportion of the working-age population (aged from 15 to 59).
In 2015-16, the labor-force participation for males was 75.5%, while that for females was a meager 27.4%, it noted.