Economy of Delhi


With an estimated Gross Domestic Product of 478 billion INR (2005 figure) [11], Delhi is an important commercial center in South Asia. According to the economic survey of Delhi, carried out in 2000-01, Delhi had a per capita income of 38,860 INR and recorded an annual economic growth rate of 9.9%. In 2001, the tertiary sector contributed 78.4% of Delhi’s GDP followed by Secondary and Primary sectors with 20.2% and 1.4% contribution respectively. The city enjoys a considerably high literacy rate (81.7%). [12] Delhi’s workforce constituted 32.84% of the population showing an increase of 51.9% between 1991 and 2001. This massive increase in the workforce was primarily due to migration of unemployed people from neighbouring states. As a consequence, Delhi’s unemployment rate increased from 5.7% to 12.7% during the period 1992 to 2000. In December 2000, 991,000 people were registered with various employment exchange programs in Delhi

Connaught Place is the commercial hub of Delhi.

Historically, Delhi has always been the economic capital of northern India. In early 19th century, it started to gain importance in arts and craft, textile and handloom. Many small-scale industries expanded, including the handloom and copper utensils industry. By the end of the 19th century, Delhi was northern India’s manufacturing hub. Delhi lies along the important trade route between Punjab and the Gangetic plains making it one of ancient India’s most important trading center.
In recent years, Delhi’s service sector has expanded exponentially due in part to the large skilled English-speaking workforce that has attracted many multinational companies. Key service industries include information technology, telecommunications, hotels, banking, media, tourism and life sciences. Delhi’s manufacturing industry has also grown considerably as many consumer goods industries have established manufacturing units and headquarters in and around Delhi.

Delhi’s large consumer market, coupled with the easy availability of skilled labour, has attracted a lot of foreign investment in Delhi. In 2001, the manufacturing sector employed 731,000 workers (24.6% of Delhi’s workforce) while the number of industrial units increased by 48.4%.[14] However, the contribution of the manufacturing sector to Delhi’s GDP declined from 25.4% in 1994 to 20.2% in 2001. Construction, banking, power, telecommunications, health and community services and real estate form integral parts of Delhi’s economy. Tourism is also a significant contributor to the economy of Delhi. Other key industries include goverment administration and defence. In 2001, the Union government had a total workforce of more than 212,000 in Delhi while the State government employed more than 114,000 people. Other local government bodies in Delhi employ as many as 298,000 people. In comparision, organised private sector employed only 217,000

Delhi’s relatively high per capita income, better living standards and high economic growth rate has attracted a lot of people from rural areas in neighboring states such as Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. Due to this high migration rate, Delhi registers as one of the fastest growing cities in the world. According to a United Nations report, Delhi will be the third largest agglomerate in the world after Tokyo and Mumbai by 2025.



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