Highlights of Budget 2017 for skill development, youth and jobs

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In this guest article, Pooja Gianchandani, International Skills Consultant, Atoms Advisory, presents a summary of the Budget allocations for skill development, vocational training for the financial year 2017-18. Pooja also shares her insights from the big picture perspective of how the budget would impact youth and jobs in India. This article is based on the full speech of the Honorable Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley on 1st February 2017*.

The Indian Finance Minister presented his Budget Speech in the Parliament today keeping youth engagement as a key theme for this year. Education and Skills Development continue to be a development priority and the Finance Ministry has amply provisioned for existing initiatives to be scaled up and newer initiatives to also be launched. His plan also shows a clear intent in creating skills infrastructure for both Industry and MSME/Home based economies.

The Budget 2017 brings in much more focus on Job creation and Skills Development.

  • There is a clear intent of strengthening the mandate of the Ministry of Skills and Entrepreneurship with a strong Budget allocation ( more than the estimated figures of 2016-17) and therefore its overall portfolio.
  • A clear direction is also seen in creating programmes that address both skills for industries and other small/medium or home based enterprises. The reiteration that young Indians shall be prepared not for the Domestic Market but also for the International labour Markets is much in line with the Skill India mission of ‘Making India the Skills capital of the World’.
  • This budget weaves in the India story and the sense of urgency to reap the Demographic Dividend is evident. The plan also provides impetus to Job Creation through the much needed infrastructure development initiatives across various sectors.

skill development budget 2017The tone of this budget plan is affirmative, focused and shouts ‘mission mode’. As I view it, this is also an interesting opportunity for the private sector, especially the employers and skills service providers, to deliver higher order programmes that connect youth to Jobs and Careers and not mere entry level Placements. Undoubtedly, such massive implementation also creates a huge demand of trained and passionate skills workforce, an unprecedented opportunities for the Universities and Academic Institutions to offer programmes in applied Social Sciences.

Budget 2017 is yet another step towards realizing the Skill India mission. I hope, however, research in skills and incentives for employer engagement shall be taken forth duly by the MSDE and its various Councils and Institutions.

A summary of the key points pertaining to Education and Skills development is as below :

Total Allocation: Total budgeted expenditure for Employment Generation, Skill and Livelihood in Budget 2017 ~ Rs. 17273 crores
Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship allocated Rs. 3016 crores

3 Big Announcements

  1. Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendras (PMKK) have already been promoted in more than 60 districts. We now propose to extend these Kendras to more than 600 districts across the country. 100 India International Skills Centres will be established across the country.   These Centres would offer advanced training and also courses in foreign languages. This will help those of our youth who seek job opportunities outside the country.
  2. In 2017-18, we also propose to launch the Skill Acquisition and Knowledge Awareness for Livelihood Promotion programme (SANKALP) at a cost of ` 4,000 crores. SANKALP will provide market relevant training to 3.5 crore youth.
  3. The next phase of Skill Strengthening for Industrial Value Enhancement (STRIVE) will also be launched in 2017-18 at a cost of ` 2,200 crores. STRIVE will focus on improving the quality and market relevance of vocational training provided in ITIs and strengthen the apprenticeship programmes through industry cluster approach

Strengthening existing programme

  1. A special scheme for creating employment in the textile sector has already been launched. A similar scheme will be implemented for the leather and footwear industries.
  2. Allocations for Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana- National Rural Livelihood Mission for promotion of skill development and livelihood opportunities for people in rural areas to 4,500 in 2017-18. The allocation for Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) and credit support schemes has been increased more than 3 times.
  3. For imparting new skills to the people in the rural areas, mason training will be provided to 5 lakh persons by 2022, with an immediate target of training at least 20,000 persons by 2017-18.
  4. 100 India International Skills Centres will be established across the country. These Centres would offer advanced training and also courses in foreign languages. This will help those of our youth who seek job opportunities outside the country.
  5. Decided to take steps to create additional 5,000 Post Graduate seats per annum. In addition, steps will be taken to roll out DNB courses in big District Hospitals; strengthen PG teaching in select ESI and Municipal Corporation Hospitals; and encourage reputed Private Hospitals to start DNB courses.
  6. By the end of 2017-18, high speed broadband connectivity on optical fibre will be available in more than 1,50,000 gram panchayats, with wifi hot spots and access to digital services at low tariffs. A DigiGaon initiative will be launched to provide tele-medicine, education and skills through digital technology

Job creation : A focus for this Financial Year

Some examples for proposed job creation:

Roads Rs. 19000 crore for Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana
Housing Rs. 23,000 crores allocation for Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana – Gramin
Renewable Energy Additional 20,000 MW through Solar parks
Electronics Manufacturing Increased the allocation for incentive schemes like M-SIPS and EDF to ` 745 crores in 2017-18
Rural Electrification 100% villages covered by 2018
Tourism 5 Special Zones will be set up
Logistics development of multi-modal logistics parks, together with multi modal transport facilities
Health
  • Create additional 5,000 Post Graduate seats per annum.
  • Steps will be taken to roll out DNB courses in big District Hospitals; strengthen PG teaching in select ESI and Municipal Corporation Hospitals; and encourage reputed Private Hospitals to start DNB courses.
  • Two new All India Institutes of Medical Sciences will be set up in the States of Jharkhand and Gujarat.

For detailed analysis, discussion points, feedback on the Budget and various facets of skills development in India please feel free to connect with Pooja at Pooja@atomadvisory.in +91 981833744

*Source : Full Speech of Honorable Finance Minister, Budget 2017, indianbudget.nic.in, 01.02.2017 Niti Aayog

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and should not be taken for NSN’s expertise or advice. 

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