With a GDP that just reached $2.6 trillion, India is poised to become the world's third largest economy in less than a decade. In doing so, it will have moved one step closer to reclaiming its pre-industrial glory when it accounted for one-sixth of the global output and ranked second in economic size. This rapid movement in the absolute size of the economy will be insufficient, however, to bring prosperity to India's vast population. Today, 44% of the country's workforce remains in agriculture and another 42% in small enterprises with fewer than twenty workers. Labor productivity of both sets of workers remains low and they live overwhelmingly on subsistence-level incomes.
In New India: Reclaiming the Lost Glory, Arvind Panagariya outlines a concise strategy to transform India from a primarily rural and agricultural economy to an urban and industrial economy with well-paid jobs for those with limited skills. Panagariya argues that the creation of good jobs requires the emergence of medium and large enterprises in industry and services, especially labor-intensive sectors such as apparel, footwear, and other light manufactures. He explains that India needs policies conducive to the growth of firms from small to medium, medium to large, and large to larger still. Such policies include greater outward orientation; more flexible land, labor, and capital markets; concerted effort to improve the quality of higher education; faster urbanization; and improved governance at all levels.
Written by a preeminent authority on the Indian economy, New India: Reclaiming the Lost Glory provides a data-driven and persuasive roadmap for India to eliminate abject poverty, accelerate economic growth, and return to its historically prominent position in the global economy.