ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Articles By R Nagaraj

Has India Deindustrialised Prematurely?

Has India deindustrialised prematurely, after three decades of free market reforms? Probably not. The manufacturing sector’s share in gross domestic product has stagnated, and Kuznetsian structural transformation has stalled. The dispersion and rankings of the major states’ manufacturing employment and output shares have broadly remained unchanged. In the top and bottom 50 districts, the share of manufacturing employment in total employment has remained constant since 1991. Yet, the district-level spatial concentration of employment by industry has increased, and the coefficient of localisation is rising. Thus, the industrial change discernible at the micro level seems too feeble to show up in the aggregate.

Manufacturing Output in New GDP Series

The new gross domestic product series, with base year 2011–12, has mostly replaced the Annual Survey of Industries with corporate financial data for estimating manufacturing value added. This has resulted in its higher share in GDP and a faster growth rate (compared to the older series). The Central Statistics Office claims that the new series better captures value addition, as ASI reportedly left out activities outside the factory of an enterprise. This claim is probably not true, as is evident from closer examination of a sample of ASI primary schedules.

Reimagining Development Banks

The RBI’s “Discussion Paper on Wholesale and Long-term Finance Banks” is a welcome initiative for its familial resemblance to development banks—an indispensable institution in most late-industrialising economies. The success of development banks critically hinges on: (i) access to assured sources of low-cost, long-term funds; (ii) public ownership and/or management; and (iii) the quality of institutional governance. As development banks invariably incur quasi-fiscal costs with potential social benefits, their operations often are kept off-budget, insulating the investments from short-term budgetary negotiations.

Unorganised Sector Output in the New GDP Series

In the new National AccountsStatistics, household (unorganised or informal) sector output for 2011-12 has shrunk by 22% in absolute size, or, by 11 percentage points of GDP, compared to the older series with 2004-05 as the base year. In per capita terms, household sector output as a proportion of GDP in the organised sector has come down from 11% to 7%. A change in the methodology of estimation has been the cause. This article investigates the merits of the new methodology.