Young population will put India in Asia's driving seat: Deloitte

18 September 2017

India is poised to race ahead Asian economic superpowers China and Japan and emerge as an economic superpower, driven in part by its young workforce while China and the Asian Tigers age rapidly, according to a Bloomberg report citing Deloitte LLP.

The number of people aged 65 and over in Asia will climb from 365 million today to more than half a billion in 2027, and account for 60 per cent of that age group globally by 2030, Deloitte said in a report today.

Thus India will drive the third great wave of Asia's growth after Japan and China, with a potential workforce set to climb from 885 million to 1.08 billion people in the next 20 years, and hold this for half a century.

''India will account for more than half of the increase in Asia's workforce in the coming decade, but this isn't just a story of more workers: these new workers will be much better trained and educated than the existing Indian workforce,'' said Anis Chakravarty, economist at Deloitte India.

"There will be rising economic potential coming alongside that, thanks to an increased share of women in the workforce, as well as an increased ability and interest in working for longer. The consequences for businesses are huge.''

India isn't the only Asian economy set to surge. Indonesia and the Philippines also have relatively young populations, suggesting they'll experience similar growth, says Deloitte.

But the rise of India isn't a given: if the right frameworks are not in place to sustain and promote growth, the burgeoning population could be faced with unemployment and become ripe for social unrest.

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