Demographic Dividend: Definition
- According to United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), demographic dividend means, “the economic growth potential that can result from shifts in a population’s age structure, mainly when the share of the working-age population (15 to 64) is larger than the non-working-age share of the population (14 and younger, and 65 and older)”.
- With fewer births each year, a country’s working-age population grows larger relative to the young dependent population. With more people in the labour force and fewer children to support, a country has a window of opportunity for economic growth if the right social and economic investments and policies are made in health, education, governance, and the economy.
Demographic Dividend in India
- India has one of the youngest populations in an aging world.
- A study on demographic dividend in India by United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) throws up two interesting facts.
- The window of demographic dividend opportunity in India is available for five decades from 2005-06 to 2055-56, longer than any other country in the world.
- This demographic dividend window is available at different times in different states because of differential behaviour of the population parameters.
- The smaller share of children in the population enables higher investment per child , therefore the future entrants in the labour force can have better productivity.
- With passage of time, the share of the older population rises and that of working age population start to decline and hence the dividend is available for a period of time, “the window of demographic opportunity”.
Forward Looking Policies:
- Undertake an updated National Transfer Accounts assessment. The NTA data for INDIA needs to be updated to capture the progress made on demographic investments
- Increase investments on Children and adolescents particularly in nutrition and early childhood education.
- To make health investments, the public spending on health has remained flat at around 1% of GDP.
- To make reproductive healthcare services accessible on a rights-based approach
- India needs to increase female workforce participation in the economy. As of 2019, 20.3% of women were working or looking for work down from 34.1% in 2003-04.
- Address the diversity between the states, Southern States already have a higher percentage of older people, this offers an opportunity for the states to work together.
- There is need for new approach to governance reforms to address the emerging issues such as migration, ageing, skilling, female workforce participation and urbanization.
Source: THE HINDU.