Inclusive economic growth that, which can accommodate the aspirations and potential of a country’s population, is the foundation of sustainable development. While India’s economy has registered impressive growth grown impressively, with GDP growth rates rising from from a GDP growth rate of 5.6 per cent in 2012-13 to 7.6 per cent in 2015-16. The country’s key challenge is to ensure that this growth translates into decent work, entrepreneurship opportunities, and skilling of the working population.
However, the vast majority of workers in India are in informal jobs. Although there has been a shift out of agriculture, construction has absorbed more workers than other sectors in recent years. Most new jobs being created in the formal sector are, in effect, informal because workers do not have access to employment benefits or social security. In addition, notable disparities in the labour force participation rates of men and women persist. India’s economic policies must strive to create adequate and quality employment opportunities, else the country risks losing its demographic dividend.
India is ideally poised for sustainable growth with its demographic potential, high investment and savings, resources for infrastructure, and skill development initiatives. Entrepreneurship, specifically, is being perceived as a key enabler for India’s growth story, in terms of stimulating innovation and domestic demand, generating employment and creating new opportunities. The government has set up the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) to address these needs, with an enabling framework to attract private investment. Additionally, Steps are also being taken to attract foreign direct investment to the country and catapult manufacturing growth.
In line with Sustainable Development Goals 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth) and 9 (Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure), the International Labour Organization (ILO) and United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) have convened a results group on job creation, skilling and entrepreneurship in India.
- The group has provided support to the Government of Mizoram on a skill- gap assessment and the formulation of a skill development and entrepreneurship policy.
- The results group is also collaborating with MSDE on promoting entrepreneurship. Additionally, ILO and UNWOMEN UN Women came together for the India consultation of the UN Secretary-General’s high-level panel on women’s economic empowerment and its follow -ups.
The group aims to use the drivers of growth to fuel the creation of quality jobs accessible to youth, women and vulnerable social groups across the country, particularly in rural areas.
 Ministry of Finance Monthly Economic Report, April 2016