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1.3 mn may lose jobs in India's export units

Last updated on: June 12, 2009 17:07 IST

About 1.3 million people are likely to lose jobs in India's export units in the current financial year because of recession in the developed countries, an United Nations Conference on Trade and Development study said on Friday.

However, the net job loss in the export sector is estimated to be 7,48,000 since some sectors like plantation may witness a positive growth.

The study said, during 2009-10, India's total exports are likely to dip by 2.2 per cent.

"Petroleum products will experience the maximum decline in export growth followed by gems and jewellery, ores and minerals and textiles and its products," it said.

However, the situation will improve in the next fiscal, when new jobs would be created in the sector, which employs about 50 million people.

"In 2010-11, about 5.22 million jobs could be created. No job losses are expected as all sectors are expected to experience positive export growth," it said.

In 2008-09, about 1.16 million people lost their jobs due to negative export growth in sectors such as textiles.

With external shipments contracting for the sixth month in a row, the country's exports aggregated $168.70 billion in 2008-09, managing a paltry growth rate of 3.4 per cent.

The study said to mitigate the impact of global slowdown on India's exports, policy intervention like diversification of exports to new geographical destinations and new products, simplification in customs procedures for reducing transaction costs are required.

"Around 958 products have been identified where India has the potential to increase its exports. These include organic chemicals, cotton, iron and steel, apparels and man-made staple fibres," it said, adding in these areas, India may be able to increase its exports by almost 21 per cent.

It added that despite targeted efforts by the government for seeking new destinations for India's exports, the US and the US continue to be the main markets.

The US and EU accounts for about 30 per cent of the country's exports.

"It is likely that regions like China, West Asia, ASEAN, Australia and Brazil are likely to witness faster recovery than other economies. They can provide viable and sustainable alternate markets for reducing India's overwhelming reliance on the EU and US for its exports," it added.

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