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Reforms poised to put India on a strong, sustainable and inclusive growth path, OECD says

December 1, 2014 Comments off

Reforms poised to put India on a strong, sustainable and inclusive growth path, OECD says
Source: OECD

The Indian economy is showing signs of a turnaround. New reforms, some of which are included in the package presented by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, need to be implemented to put the country on a path to strong, sustainable and inclusive growth, according to the latest OECD Economic Survey of India.

The Survey, presented in New Delhi by OECD Chief Economist Catherine L. Mann and Arvind Subramanian, Chief Economic Adviser to the Government of India, notes that India slowed more than many other countries since 2011, but is now recovering faster. India’s GDP should grow by more than 6.5 percent annually in the coming years.

Investment and exports are driving the rebound, but growth will be sustained at a stronger pace if further steps are taken. In the near term, stable and lower inflation and smaller deficits are needed. Structural improvements to the business climate are crucial for medium term growth, and in the longer-term, health improvements and increased female participation in the labour market will sustain strong and inclusive growth.

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Coping Strategies in Response to Rising Food Prices: Evidence From India

November 28, 2014 Comments off

Coping Strategies in Response to Rising Food Prices: Evidence From India
Source: USDA Economic Research Service

Along with world food prices, the prices of staple grains in India surged between 2006 and 2010. This study shows that regions in India affected the worst by the price increases coped by sacrificing diet diversity and expenditures on medical expenses and durable goods.

Women and Men in India – 2014

November 27, 2014 Comments off

Women and Men in India – 2014
Source: Government of India — Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation
From Highlights (PDF)

Population and related statistics

1. As per Census 2011, the population of India is more than 121 Crore with 48.5% females, which is a corollary of the fact, that there are 949 female to 1000 males in rural India against 929 in urban India.
2. The sex ratio has improved in urban & rural India over last decades and the gap in sex ratio in rural and urban India is converging in recent decades, which may be due to more migration of families to the urban setup.
3. The State of Kerala, Puducherry, Manipur, Goa and Chhattisgarh have more females than males whereas Daman & Diu and Chandigarh are home to less than 800 females to 1000 males.
4. In the last 60 years, states of Assam, Delhi and West Bengal have improved the sex ratio substantially, but on the contrary, sex ratio has worsened in major states like Bihar and Odisha.
5. There are 918 females to 1000 males in the age-group 0-6 years, with maximum disparity in sex ratio of rural & urban area existing in Daman & Diu and Gujarat having lesser females in urban Area.
6. The Sex Ratio is least for the Girl Child (0-19 Years) but 1033 females per 1000 males in the age group of 60+ indicating a threat of less economic activity by a sizable population. The economically active age group (15-59) has 944 females to 1000 males. Sex ratio at birth is 908 in 2012, which has marginally decreased as compared to the last year.
7. As per the Sample Registration System, of the total females in 2012, 42.8% were never married, 48.9% were married and rest were widowed, divorced or separated, whereas 52.5% of total males are unmarried and 45.2% are married.
8. The mean age at marriage for females stood at 21.2 years in 2012 with urban age at 22.4 and rural mean age at 20.8.
9. Among the major States, the highest mean age at marriage was 24.6 years for Jammu & Kashmir and the lowest was 20.2 years for Jharkhand.
10. As per National Sample Survey 68th Round (2011-12), 11.5% of total households in rural and 12.4 % in urban were female headed households as compared to 9.7% and 10.6% during 1993-94.

Turk-Life in India

November 19, 2014 Comments off

Turk-Life in India
Source: Microsoft Research

Previous studies on Amazon Mechanical Turk (AMT), the most well-known marketplace for microtasks, show that the largest population of workers on AMT is U.S. based, while the second largest is based in India. In this paper, we present insights from an ethnographic study conducted in India to introduce some of these workers or ‘Turkers’ – who they are, how they work and what turking means to them. We examine the work they do to maintain their reputations and their work-life balance. In doing this, we illustrate how AMT’s design practically impacts on turk-work. Understanding the ‘lived work’ of crowdwork is a valuable first step for technology design.

India: the biggest democracy in the world

November 19, 2014 Comments off

India: the biggest democracy in the world
Source: European Parliamentary Research Service

With 1 267 million inhabitants, of which 834 million can vote, India is the largest democracy in the world. Despite India’s linguistic and religious diversity, the 2014 general elections have given the newly elected Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, a strong mandate. Since coming into office, Modi has reinforced his focus on the economy and international trade, which may further cement EU-India relations. The EU and India have been strategic partners since 2004. They began negotiations on a free trade area in 2007, although several Indian political parties have concerns over these.

Oil Security Index — Who Is at Risk? (October 2014 Update)

November 18, 2014 Comments off

Oil Security Index — Who Is at Risk? (October 2014 Update)
Source: Securing America’s Future Energy

When launched in October 2013, SAFE’s Oil Security Index was hailed as an essential tool for those seeking greater insight into both what constitutes oil security, and which countries are most oil secure. The Index included then-current and historical data tracing national rankings back to 2000.

In this update, SAFE adds data through Q2 2014 and revises the rankings accordingly. The Index’s seven metrics capture three core aspects of oil security: the structural dependency of countries’ economies on oil, the economic exposure of countries to oil prices and the changes in those prices, and the physical supply security of a country’s domestic and imported oil.

This most recent update features a special focus on Japan, the Index’s most oil-secure country. Japan ranks highly in spite of its minimal domestic oil resources and high import levels, which are offset by several other indicators. Most notably, Japan’s high oil efficiency and its role as an international storage hub work in favor of the county’s long-term oil security.

The latest Index update also shines a light on India, where burgeoning demand has driven oil consumption up 75 percent since 2000. Amidst rising demand for gasoline and increasing incomes, India struggles with a heavy reliance on Middle East imports and low overall efficiency, leaving it suspended at 11 out of 13 in the Index rankings.

Understanding India’s economic geography

November 4, 2014 Comments off

Understanding India’s economic geography
Source: McKinsey & Company

India’s rapid growth in the decade to 2012 saw it emerge as one of Asia’s most promising markets. But the recent slowdown made growth and profitability increasingly elusive, forcing companies to think harder about the way they allocate resources. As growth picks up, and rapid shifts in India’s urban and rural economic landscapes occur, marketers will need to make strategic market choices to maximize returns. Understanding the growth drivers and identifying high-potential markets at a granular level are critical priorities for businesses looking to benefit significantly from this returning tide of growth.

Taking into account their existing footprints, product mixes and extensions, and long-term aspirations, companies could consider three approaches to dissect the Indian market and decipher its heterogeneity: states, clusters, and cities. The research underpinning McKinsey’s latest report—India’s economic geography in 2025: States, clusters, and cities—combines a robust understanding of macroeconomic issues at a national level with microlevel insights on the economic and income potential of states, districts, and cities.1 By building a granular view, based on several different economic scenarios, of where growth and market opportunities will emerge, the report shows that businesses can tailor investment decisions to capture a disproportionate share of the pie in India’s ever-changing economic geography.

Our research focuses on distinct geographic slivers of opportunity at each level of granularity.

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