Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 6 (IANS) The Kerala economy has registered a growth of 7.5 per cent in 2018-19 compared to 6.8 per cent in 2017-18, said State Finance Minister Thomas Issac on Thursday after presenting the economic review in the Kerala Assembly. However, the unemployment rate in the state has also increased for the corresponding period, the economic review has revealed.
Issac said that the growth trajectory as shown in the economic review has given him the confidence to present the state budget on Friday.
“This growth has taken place during a general slowdown in economic growth at the national as well at the global level,” said Issac.
The review also pointed out that per capita income in Kerala in 2018-19 stood at Rs 1,48,078, while the national average was Rs 93,655.
Kerala is one of the leading states with respect to per capita income, along with Haryana, Gujarat, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.
It was the performance of the manufacturing sector that appears to have kept the state’s flag flying high as the review revealed that in this sector the annual rates of value added growth were 18.2 per cent, 3.7 and 11.2 in the past three fiscals.
In this sector, the turnaround in the performance of the state public sector units in the chemicals sector, fresh investments in petroleum refining and a new impetus to the manufacture of electronic components were some of the highlights of the improved performance of the state’s industrial sector since 2016-17.
While agriculture had nothing to cheer about, sectors like fishing, aquaculture, hotels and restaurants besides social services like education and health did well.
While the review is optimistic about the general economy, it paints a grim picture of the employment sector. According to the review, the total number of job seekers has gone up from 35.61 lakh in 2018 to 37.46 lakh in 2019.