Over 7.5 lakh people could end up losing jobs as an embattled export sector, buffeted by a shrinking world demand and drying orders, struggle to stay afloat.
“It is apprehended that the contribution of the export sector in generating employment in India is likely to remain under stress still 2009-10 with improvements in 2010-11. The net employment loss is estimated to be around 748,000 in 2009-10,” said a study by United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
The study—Impact of Global Slowdown on India’s Exports and Employment—projected that maximum job losses are likely to occur in gems and jewellery sector followed by ores and minerals, textiles and textile products.
In 2009-10, most of the sectors are predicted to have job losses, except for agriculture and plantation for which positive growth has been projected.
The country’s export sector contracted for the seventh successive month plunging by 33.2 per cent in April as the new government got down to task groping for options to sustain growth amid the worst slowdown in the world economy in the last 80 years.
“One of the immediate policy actions which may be required to mitigate the impact of global slowdown on employment is to identify the export sectors which have large employment multipliers,” the report said.
Textiles and gems and jewellery sectors appear to have taken the worst hit from the piling rubble of the global economic meltdown.
While during 2010-11 most sectors are likely experience positive export growth reversing the declining trend in employment, the slowdown in textiles and gems and jewellery could last longer.
“In respect of textile sector and gems and jewellery the export growth during April to December 2010-11 would not be sufficiently buoyant so as to compensate for job losses during the preceding two years,” the study said.