Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu today said India was one of the youngest nations in the world with around 62 per cent of its population belonging to the working age group and the presence of such a young population was a challenge as well as an opportunity. The vice-president was addressing the 2017 Entrepreneurs’ Organisation Global University conference held here. “India is one of the youngest nations in the world with around 62 per cent of its population in the working age group of 15-59 years and nearly 54 per cent of its total population below 25 years of age. This poses a formidable challenge and a huge opportunity,” he said.
The country was striving to provide requisite skills and to create a conducive environment for the youth to enter the world of work “either as employees or as employers”, he said. The initiatives launched by the government, including Skill India, Start-up India and Make in India, helped build an eco-system for nurturing entrepreneurship in the country, Naidu said. The demonetisation and rollout of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) were steps taken with a long-term view, he said. “Both demonetisation and the GST system are steps taken with a long term view. They are meant for achieving long-term goals of more revenue for the government and ultimately the fruits of it would be given to the society via spending revenue on social developmental schemes,” he said.
The vice president said along with governmental initiatives, the youth must be equipped to take on challenges and access the emerging opportunities. The theme of the conference was ‘Jugaad’ or improvisation. Innovation was important in the rapidly changing world, he said. “Some call it a ‘frugal innovation’ as well. It is the art of maximising returns (while) wisely utilising the scarce resources. It is the ability to create ‘value’ by a creative, innovative and frugal use of available materials,” he said.