ILO Report Reveals: 82.9% of India’s Unemployed Population are Youths



ILO or International Labor Organization released a 2024 report that says youth comprise 82.9% of India’s unemployed population.

There is an area of concern in the report. The share of educated youths in this unemployed population who have the minimum qualification of secondary education has increased from 35.2% in 2000 to 65.7% in 2022.

There is a growing risk of dropouts after secondary education among poor and marginalized groups. Although enrolment in higher education is on the rise concerns regarding the poor quality of education persist. There is a deficiency in learning among school students and those pursuing higher education.

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ILO reports Growing Unemployment among Educated Youths

According to a report, there is a wave of employment and underemployment among youths between 2000 and 2019. But there is a decline in that during Covid-19. During this period Indian youths suffered a high level of unemployment.

Unemployment levels vary significantly across Indian states. Some states are consistently ranking low on employment. States like Bihar, UP, Jharkhand, MP are struggling with the issue of unemployment due to their regional policies.

Challenges of Youth Employment In India

One of the biggest advantages of India is its youth population which is largest in the world. It is crucial for India to become the world’s largest youth workforce leveraging this huge young population. But this advantage received a setback. The country’s youth population was 27% in 2021 which is projected to come down to 23% by 2036.

Covid-19 has brought a downfall in India’s youth labor market. Although post-lockdown has witnessed an improvement in the scenario,  problems like low-quality work add up. Here I am talking about issues like self-employment and unpaid family work.

There is a growing demand for young professionals thanks to technology advancements. They are better at adapting to new technologies. So there is a rise in high and medium-skilled jobs. But there is a lack of security in these sectors.

Besides, there exist regional disparities in Indian states about youth employment. Especially in Eastern and North-Eastern states. However, the rest of the country is showing some promise in this particular area.

Skill Deficiency is key to Youth Unemployment

The report also mentioned that Indian youths lack digital skills. 75% of Indian youths don’t know how to attach files in an email. There is a mention of the gender gap and social disparities in the report.



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