How have changes to economic sectors had positive and negative effects in India?

Forty-three per cent of India’s working population is employed in agriculture, a primary industry. However, this number is steadily declining as agricultural investment has been decreasing, so there are few new jobs or techniques being used on farms. Additionally, India’s rapid population growth has increased pressure on jobs, and agricultural workers tend to be unskilled so find it difficult to get alternative employment. Outdated agricultural techniques mean crop yields tend to be poor and working on farms is seasonal meaning many people are becoming unemployed.

Manufacturing (secondary industry) has grown rapidly in India. It now employs around 24% of the workforce. Jobs in the secondary industry are supporting economic growth. Wages are higher and employment is more reliable. The sale of manufactured goods abroad brings more income into India compared with selling raw materials. However, the lack of health and safety regulations in India means working conditions are often poor.

Tertiary (services) and quaternary (knowledge) industries now account for 34% of India’s workforce. This is the result of the rapid growth of IT companies providing support for foreign companies, in operations such as call centres. However, the increase in automation and the move to new technologies means the number of jobs available is reducing, leading to job insecurity for many people.

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