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Republic Economic Summit 2021 | How Women Entrepreneurs' Increased Participation Is Shaping India's Economic Growth

In India, the Periodic Labour Force for women aged 15 years and above stood at 30% in 2019-20, compared to 24.5% in 2018-19 and 23.3% in 2017-18.

Women and Indian economy

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In the lead-up to the first-ever Republic India Economic Summit, which will see the most influential names in the industry, to put the world's fastest-growing major economy under the microscope, Republic World is taking an in-depth look into some of its key drivers. This includes the increasing participation of women in India's economy. 

Over the past few decades, women have been building the foundation for economic growth and prosperity in India, through their talent, dedication enthusiasm and hard work. Venturing into the male-dominated market, women started their own businesses and worked tirelessly to prove that they are as adept and successful in the entrepreneurial field as their male counterparts.

According to the periodic labour force survey by the labour ministry, participation of the female workforce in India’s labour market has seen year-on-year growth, resulting in a dip in the unemployment rate for the women workforce. 

As per statistics, the Periodic Labour Force for women aged 15 years and above stood at 30% in 2019-20, compared to 24.5% in 2018-19 and 23.3% in 2017-18. Consequently, the unemployment rate for the women workforce has dropped to 4.2% for 2019-20 as against 5.1% in 2018-19 and 5.6% for 2017-18. Notably, in 2019, India elected women to fill 78 of the 542 seats in the lower house of parliament, a record high.

Wealthiest  businesswomen in India

Making their mark in the business field, women have also emerged as billionaires in a range of industries. Some of the richest businesspersons who brought India onto the global maps include Savitri Jindal, Chairperson Emeritus of OP Jindal Group, Roshni Nadar Malhotra of HCL Technologies, Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Chairperson of Biocon Limited, among many others. The recent businesswoman to enter the list was Falguni Nayar, Founder and CEO of Nykaa who became India's wealthiest self-made female billionaire this month. 

There is sufficient evidence to suggest that opportunity and access to knowledge and resources can make all the difference. In the Union Budget 2021-22, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced that women will be allowed to work in all categories and also in the night shifts with adequate protection. This was done to ensure that lack of safety is no barrier to participation of women in economic and self-enhancements. 

The budget has further increased allocation for Pro-Women Schemes from Rs 1,14,893 crore to Rs 1,28,065 crore - an increase of 11.46%.

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