Indian urbanisation messy, reforms needed: World Bank

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New Delhi | Updated: Sep 24, 2015 3:43 PM

India's urbanisation is "messy and hidden" says a report by The World Bank, which cites the South Asian country's inability to deal with pressures on infrastructure, basic civic services, land and housing, due to increase in urban population.

According to Nomura, historically, the manufacturing PMI has fallen in August and the decline this year has been much smaller than the average fall of 1 point in the last six years. (Reuters)The World Bank said there has been difficulty in dealing with pressures that increased urban populations put on basic services, infrastructure, land, housing and environment, fostering “messy and hidden” urbanisation. (Reuters)

India’s urbanisation is “messy and hidden” says a report by The World Bank, which cites the South Asian country’s inability to deal with pressures on infrastructure, basic civic services, land and housing, due to increase in urban population.

“If managed well urbanization can lead to sustainable growth by increasing productivity, allowing innovation and new ideas to emerge,” said World Bank managing director and chief operating officer Sri Mulyani Indrawati.

Messy urbanization in India is reflected in the nearly 6.55 crore Indians who, according to the country’s population 2011 Census, live in urban slums, as well as the 13.7% of the urban population that lived below the national poverty line in 2011.  It is also reflected in the increasing uncontroled expansion of many Indian cities, it says. Hidden urbanization is seen in the large share of India’s population that lives in unorganised settlements that possess urban characteristics but do not satisfy the civic criteria required to be officially classified as urban, the report said.

In India, the pace of urbanisation was just over 1.15% a year from 2001 to 2011.Analyzing the patterns of India’s urbanisation, World Bank says that while India added seven multicity agglomerations between 1999 and 2010 for a total of 30 cities, Indian cities are not able to take full advantage of these agglomerations.

The largest metropolitan cities — Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Kolkata, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Ahmedabad — saw a 16% loss in manufacturing jobs between 1998 and 2005 within 10 km of their city centers, as manufacturing and other major industries moved out of the core city to the outskirts. On the other hand, job growth in their immediate peripheries increased by almost 12%.

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