Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Trade Liberalization and Unemployment in India: A State Level Analysis

Dhamija, Nidhi (2019): Trade Liberalization and Unemployment in India: A State Level Analysis.

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The study empirically examines the relationship between trade liberalization and unemployment for the Indian economy using data for Indian states (separately for rural and urban areas). This study provides support to the argument that effects of trade liberalization have been different for the states in India. The results find evidence for the negative relationship unemployment and trade openness. The relationship is significant for rural parts of the states which also drive results for the total state; though for urban part of the states, relationship is not found to be significant. The results also indicate that this effect is higher and stronger for more flexible states. The results hence, confirm to the theory that in developing countries trade openness leads to increase in the employment of labour; but more so of unskilled workers and leads to a movement away from the agriculture and hence rural sector of the economy. This is substantiated by internal migration trends for India which showed an increase in population mobility during post reform period. The data also corroborated the shift from rural agricultural to rural non-agricultural and urban sectors of the economy.

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