7.2 mn Indians added to workforce annually: Study

Around 7.2 million Indians are being added to the workforce annually since 2012-13, which will take the total size of the workforce to 485.6 million by 2016-17, with manufacturing being the largest job creator, according to a study.
The Assocham-NILERD (National Institute of Labour Economics Research & Development) study found that manufacturing, construction and services including transport, communication, hotels, education and real estate are the major contributors to creation of non-agricultural employment.

Within the manufacturing sector, the maximum employment is being created by the labour-intensive segments. These include food processing units, wearing apparel, garments, leather and wood products, the study found.

Significantly, the study revealed that about 37 million workers have left agriculture in India. To sustain this transition, we need to create enough employment in the non-agriculture sector, it suggested.

The size of labour force in India increased in a peculiar manner. During 1993-94 and 1999-2000 it increased by 25.5 million. In the next 5 years from 1999-2000 to 2004-05, it showed a remarkable increase of 60 million with an increase of 12 million per annum.

However, in the last half of the decade post 2004-05, it did not increase at all and remained constant at 469.9 million. Surprisingly in the next two years, during 2009-10 to 2011-12, the labour force increased by 15 million to reach 484.8 million.

The stagnation of the labour force during 2004-05 to 2009-10 is due to the massive increase of education participation as well as the withdrawal of females from the labour force owing to mechanisation in agriculture, increase in rural wages, thus raising the household income, the study noted.
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