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Obama fears losing future jobs to India

Last updated on: October 1, 2010 08:45 IST

Obama fears losing future jobs to India

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Lalit K Jha in Washington

The US has expressed concerns about the decline in college graduations of American youth, saying the nation is "losing" its competitive position and "future jobs" to countries like India, which is spending heavily in education sector.

"You saw countries like China, India and Brazil investing heavily in their education systems and in infrastructure... And where we used to be ranked number one, for example, in the proportion of college graduates, we now rank number 12" President Barack Obama said at a public meeting in Iowa.

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Image: Students gather next to paintings of US President Barack Obama as a child, at Obama's former elementary school in Jakarta.
Photographs: Enny Nuraheni/Reuters.
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"So slowly all the things that had made us the most productive country on earth were starting to slip away. And we were losing that competitive position" he said.

Praising India, China and Brazil for "aggressively" educating their children than ever before, Obama said the US is facing tough competition from these developing nations and "sooner or later" they will move ahead of it in exports.

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Image: US President Barack Obama meets with Virginian homeowners.
Photographs: Reuters.
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Obama fears losing future jobs to India

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"I mean, you've got countries like China and India and Brazil that are really moving...They are exporting much more than they ever were. And so we're having to compete at levels that we didn't have to compete before."

With the decline in number of graduates, which is likely to bring down the research graph, Obama feared that the US will lose jobs to India and other developing economies because they are trying to new resources for clean energy, a must in the future.

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Image: A student with an 'Obama haircut' at Wright Middle School in Madison, Wisconsin.
Photographs: Larry Downing/Reuters.
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"China, India, Japan, all these countries are thinking about new ways to find clean energy, and if we're not the ones who get there first in terms of figuring this stuff out, then they're the ones who are going to get the jobs of the future," he said.

"And I don't want them to get those jobs. I want us to have those jobs right here in the United States," the President appealed to Americans. Obama warned people that if US does not pull its socks up to beat the competition from India, China, Brazil and Europe, the nation will no longer be "land of opportunity" in the coming two decades.

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Image: Obama greets workers.

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"I think even people who are doing okay right now are anxious about the future of the country."

He held the previous regime responsible for the educational decline in the US and said during George W Bush reign the nation became less competitive internationally due to which jobs, especially manufacturing ones, were shipped overseas.


Image: Barack Obama volunteers to paint at National Day of Service and Remembrance event in Washington.
Photographs: Reuters.
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