Updated: January 15, 2021 8:02:24 am
WOMEN’S PARTICIPATION in economic activities has increased considerably in Kerala, largely driven by self-employment and casual labour, especially in rural areas, according to the Economic Review 2020 tabled in the assembly by state Finance Minister Thomas Isaac on Thursday.
Quoting the periodic labour force survey, the Economic Review said female workforce participation rate in Kerala grew to 20.4 per cent in 2018-19 from 16.4 per cent in 2017-18. The workforce participation rate is defined as “the percentage of persons in the labour force among the persons in the population”.
“This is the first time that women in Kerala are more actively participating in economic activities than their counterparts at all-India level,” the Economic Review said. The women in the state have a higher participation rate than that of all-India average in all age groups, except the age group of 15-29 (a chunk in this group could be pursuing education), it said.
Though both male and female labour force participation rate (LFPR) and work participation rate (WPR) increased, the increase in women LFPR and WPR is more evident.
The Economic Review attributed the increase in women’s participation in economic activities to increase in self-employment and casual labour. It said this was possible due to the special emphasis on NREGA, the state’s Ayyankali Urban Employment Guarantee Scheme and the self-employment opportunities promoted through micro/nano enterprises to provide remunerative work to women in the post-2018 flood recovery phase.
Due to the unprecedented floods and landslides of August 2018 and 2019, and the 2020 pandemic, the budgets of last three years have given focus on the livelihood revival/rebuilding Kerala, giving more priority to women, the Economic Review said.
Despite resource constraints, the government focuses on women’s employment with a big thrust in particular on women entrepreneurship, both agro-based and non-agro based, traditional and non-traditional, it said.
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