Employment scenario in India grim, says ILO report


The India Employment Report 2024,’ stated that the share of unemployed youth in India with secondary or higher education nearly doubled from 35.2% in 2000 to 65.7% in 2022, indicating a significant challenge for educated individuals in finding employment.


GS – 2, GS- 3 (Inclusive Growth, Government Policies & Interventions)

Key Highlights:

  • Youngsters make up almost 83% of the unemployed workforce in India, highlighting the severity of the youth unemployment issue in the country.
  • Despite some paradoxical improvements in labour market indicators over the past two decades, the fundamental issue remains the insufficient growth of non-farm sectors and their capacity to absorb workers from agriculture.
  • The report underscores the skills gap among India’s youth, with a significant percentage unable to perform basic tasks like sending emails or using spreadsheets.
  • It pointed out the substantial gender gap in the labor market, with low rates of female labor force participation.

Highlights from the World Employment and Social Outlook: Trends 2024

  • Persistent Working Poverty: Despite declines since 2020, the number of workers living in extreme and moderate poverty increased in 2023, indicating persistent challenges in securing decent livelihoods.
  • Global Unemployment Trends: The global unemployment rate stood at 5.1% in 2023, a modest improvement from 2022. However, the report projects a worsening Labor Market outlook, with an additional two million workers expected to be looking for jobs in 2024, raising the global unemployment rate to 5.2%.
  • Resilience Amid Economic Strain: Despite economic challenges, global labor markets have shown surprising resilience, with improvements in both the unemployment rate and the jobs gap rate.
  • Income Inequality and Declining Disposable Incomes: Income inequality has widened, and Disposable Incomes have declined in the majority of G20 countries, posing challenges for economic recovery and social well-being.
  • Gender Disparities and Youth Unemployment: While women’s labor force participation has rebounded, gender gaps persist, especially in emerging and developing nations. Youth unemployment rates remain high, posing long-term challenges for employment prospects.
  • Uneven Recovery and Social Inequity: The recovery from the pandemic is uneven, with new vulnerabilities and multiple crises eroding prospects for greater social justice. Differences persist between higher and lower income countries, both in terms of unemployment rates and jobs gap rates.
  • Stagnant Informal Work Rates: Rates of Informal Work are expected to remain static, indicating a significant segment of vulnerable employment within the global workforce.
  • Productivity Challenges Amid Technological Advances: After a brief post-pandemic boost, labor productivity has returned to low levels, hindered by factors such as skills shortages and the dominance of large digital monopolies.
  • Real Wage Dynamics Across G20: Real wages in India and Turkey show positive trends compared to other G20 countries, reflecting varying economic dynamics and policy impacts on wage growth.
  • Structural Workforce Concerns: Imbalances observed may be structural, posing threats to individual livelihoods and business sustainability. Addressing issues such as falling living standards and weak productivity is crucial for sustainable recovery and social justice.

International Labour Organisation (ILO):

  • The International Labour Organisation (ILO) was established in 1919 as part of the Treaty of Versailles following World War I.
  • It aims to promote social justice as a foundation for lasting global peace.
  • It became a specialized agency of the United Nations in 1946 and operates as a unique tripartite organization, involving representatives from governments, employers, and workers in its decision-making processes.
  • It has a total 187 member states including India.
  • India is one amongst the founding member.
  • The ILO addresses issues related to labor and employment on a global scale.
  • India assumed the Chairmanship of the Governing Body of the ILO in 2020.
  • The ILO, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.
  • It received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1969 for its efforts in promoting decent work, justice for workers, and fostering peace and cooperation among nations.