Economic Growth of India Post COVID: What experts have to say? 

Inclusive Growth of India

In recent times, India has seen a lot of changes as far as the growth and development is the concern. The spread of novel coronavirus has changed the world completely. Experts say that the nation can never go back to the pre-covid situation. The economy and the market will reboot and the reports do suggest the huge impact of the virus on India.

Let us understand the context of growth and development so far in terms of inclusive growth of the country. Inclusive growth means economic growth that creates employment opportunities and helps in reducing poverty. It means having access to essential services in health and education by the poor. It includes providing equality of opportunity, empowering people through education and skill development.

It also encompasses a growth process that is environment-friendly growth, aims for good governance and helps in the creation of a gender-sensitive society. As per OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development), inclusive growth is economic growth that is distributed fairly across society and creates opportunities for all.

Elements of Inclusive Growth

Skill Development

  • Harnessing the demographic dividend will depend upon the employability of the working-age population, their health, education, vocational training and skills. Skill development plays a key role here.
  • India is facing a dual challenge in skill development:
    • First, there is a paucity of highly trained workforce
    • Second, there is non-employment of conventionally trained youths
  • According to the Economic Survey 2017, over 30% of youth in India are NEET (Not in education, employment or training).
  • Similarly, UNICEF 2019 reports stats that at least 47% of Indian youth are not on track to have the education and skills necessary for employment in 2030.

Read more: What is the Gig Economy?

Financial Inclusion

  • Financial Inclusion is the process of ensuring access to financial services to vulnerable groups at affordable costs.
  • Financial inclusion is necessary for inclusive growth as it leads to the culture of saving, which initiates a virtuous cycle of economic development.

Technological Advancement

  • The world is moving towards an era of Industrial Revolution 4.0. These technological advancements have capabilities to both decrease or increase the inequality depending on the way these are being used.
  • Several initiatives have been taken by the government, eg. Digital India Mission, so that a digitally literate population can leverage technology for endless possibilities.
  • Technology can help to combat other challenges too, eg:
    • Agriculture- Modern technology can help in making an agro-value chain from farmer to consumer more efficient and competitive.
    • Manufacturing- Technology can resolve the problems of finance, procuring raw materials, land, and linkages with the user market. GST was made possible only with the help of sound technology.
    • Education- Innovative digital technologies can create new forms of adaptive and peer learning, increasing access to trainers and mentors, providing useful data in real-time.
    • Health- Technologies could transform the delivery of public health services – extend care through remote health services
    • Governance- Technology can cut down delays, corruption, and inefficiency in the delivery of a public service

Economic Growth

  • India is among the fastest-growing major economies in the world. However, currently the Indian economy is facing a slowdown due to both cyclic and structural challenges.
  • However, the target of becoming a $ 5 trillion economy by 2024-25 can allow India to reduce inequality, increase social expenditure and provide employment to all.

Social Development

  • It means the empowerment of all marginalised sections of the population like SC/ST/OBC/Minorities, women and transgenders.
  • Empowerment can be done by improving institutions of the social structure i.e. hospitals especially primary care in the rural areas, schools, universities, etc.
  • Investment in social structures will not only boost growth (by fiscal stimulus) but will also create a healthy and capable generation to handle future work.

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