Here is something to cheer for Kerala. Major global economic & financial publication”The Economist” has come out with an article praising Kerala among other southern states for fuelling India’s economic growth.
The article, titled “India’s regional inequality could be politically explosive” in “The Economist” on October 27, is all praise for Kerala and other southern states – Tamil Nadu, Goa and Karnataka — for being different in its approach in implementing welfare schemes and finding means to improve economic development. The article also appreciated Maharastra for its growth.
“Most of India’s economic development in the past four decades has come from the southern and western states (see map), which have become hubs for manufacturing and high-tech industries. But the heartland states of the Gangetic Plain have shown little sign of catching up. While recent decades have seen convergence between the incomes of poorer countries and richer ones, within India “this process of convergence has failed”, the article in “The Economist”says, quoting a recent paper by Rohit Lamba of Penn State University and ArvindSubramanian of Brown University.
The article literally suggests focusing on southern states with a subheading “Go South, Young Man” while at the same time describing the situation in the north as “It’s grim up north”.
Financial experts say the article in ‘The Economist” reflected the transformation Kerala had undergone in the last couple of years. Kerala ranks second in the Investment Climate Index followed by Karnataka as per a policy research working paper by the World Bank.
The state stands second due to its world-class infrastructure and well-trained human resource pool. As per an IBEF report, “at current prices, Kerala’s total GSDP (Gross State Domestic Product) is estimated to be Rs 9,99,643 crore (US$ 134.05 billion) in2022-23, an increase of 10.8% over FY22.
The state’s GSDP recorded a CAGR (Compounded Annual Growth Rate) of 8.57% between 2015-16 and 2022-23.” It’s a fact that exports from Kerala and overseas investment to Kerala had increased drastically over the years. According to the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), cumulative FDI inflows in Kerala stood at US$ 574.27 million between October 2019-December 2021.
Exports from the state stood at US$ 3.94 billion in FY21 and US$ 4.03 billion in FY22 (until February). The Special Economic Zones and IT parks continued to be the major economic driving force for the state.
As per records, Kerala has 29 formally approved SEZs, 25 notified SEZs and 19 exporting SEZs. It has three major IT parks – Technopark in Thiruvananthapuram, Infopark in Kochi and Cyberpark in Kozhikode apart from satellite IT parks in smaller cities like Kannur, Alappuzha and Thrissur.