Tuesday, February 5, 2013

India "skills deficit" fact of the day!

The FT has this striking stat about India's skills deficit, 
Out of the 12.8m joining the workforce every year, only 8 or 9 per cent have any skills, while many can barely read having left school at 13.
In simple terms, we have a double challenge if we are reap the "demographic dividend". There is a "skills deficit" crisis - unemployable youth coming out of a failing schools system - coupled with a "jobs" crisis - economic growth not accompanied by job creation.

There are no quick-fixes, irrespective of whatever the NSDC does, for making "unemployable" youth emerging from 10-12 years of schooling employable over a short period. The schooling system has to be fixed and structural problems in the labor market has to be addressed. Unfortunately, both, especially the former, are super-difficult problems. Sadly, I am not optimistic about much progress in this regard in the medium term. They hardly get a mention in mainstream debates which harp on improving investor confidence and restoring animal spirits. 

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