Central Bank Data Reveals Massive Job Growth in India, Contradicting Private Surveys

Central Bank: India’s central bank recently reported a significant increase in employment, stating that 46.7 million jobs were added in the fiscal year ending March 2024. This figure sharply contrasts with private surveys that highlight high unemployment rates in the country. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) revealed a 6% employment growth rate for 2023/24, up from 3.2% in 2022/23, based on data from the National Accounts and the Ministry of Labour.

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Job Numbers vs. Private Surveys

The RBI’s data indicates a total employment figure of 643.3 million for 2023/24, compared to 596.7 million in the previous fiscal year. This substantial increase challenges private sector reports, such as a recent Citibank study, which estimated that India’s GDP growth of nearly 7% would only create 8 to 9 million jobs, falling short of the 11 to 12 million jobs required annually.

Government’s Stance on Employment

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has faced scrutiny over employment and inflation issues, which analysts link to the recent electoral results where Modi had to rely on allies to secure a third term. Despite these challenges, the central bank’s optimistic employment figures suggest a more favorable job market than private surveys indicate.

Central Bank
Central Bank

Conflicting Estimates

Contrary to Citibank’s cautious outlook, the federal labour department claimed that over 20 million job opportunities were created annually between 2017-18 and 2021-22. Meanwhile, the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy, a private think tank, estimated that the unemployment rate rose to 8% in 2023-24 from 7.5% and 7.7% in the previous two years.

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New Methodology from Central Bank

For the first time, the RBI attempted a provisional estimate of productivity for the total economy for the financial year 2023/24, using available data. Traditionally, the central bank’s reports have only presented historical data, making this a significant development in assessing India’s economic health.

People standing in line for job
People standing in line for job
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Conclusion

The stark difference between the RBI’s data and private surveys has sparked a debate about the true state of employment in India. As the government and analysts continue to examine these figures, the need for accurate and reliable employment data remains crucial for policy-making and economic planning.

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