Demographic dividend will not be automatic: Alagh

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Hyderabad, Dec 15 (UNI) The demographic dividend, which India is projected to get in the 21st century, will come only to the brave, according to former Union Minister and noted economist Yoginder K Alagh.

''Whether in education or in the consequences of demographic dividend variety, the future is ours to build and not automatic.

Dividends come to the brave. That lesson of the founders of this society is important now as it was then,'' he said, inaugurating the 49th session of the Indian Labour Economics Association at the Centre for Social and Economic Studies here.

India would grow at over eight per cent upto 2020 only if it saved more, growth of resource use efficiency went up by around 40 per cent, it integrated faster with the world and handled land, water and energy problems well, he said, pointing out that ''when people are hungry, feel cheated and unfairly treated, don't have a job or are sick. they are not an asset''.

''The demographic bonus will not be ours simply because those, who a few years ago were saying that the World was not growing, are now saying we will. They were wrong then and they could be so now,'' he observed.

The differences between India and Japan or Spain were large, he said, adding that retirees being thrice more than workers in Japan and Spain compared to India. Consequently, 4.4 workers would support a retiree in India, but 1.4 in Japan or Spain. The differences in savings and demand-led growth would obviously create large imbalances, he added.

Speaking on higher education in the Eleventh Plan, Dr Alagh Called for setting up of Inter-University Rural Development Centre in backward areas, he said the best talent must be encouraged to go there. He advocated Entrepreneurship training for school dropouts for getting self employment.

UNI

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