“Inflexible Labor Laws” Lead Indian Firms “to Substitute Machines for Unskilled Labor”

(p. A19) . . . , India is failing to make full use of the estimated one million low-skilled workers who enter the job market every month.
Manufacturing requires transparent rules and reliable infrastructure. India is deficient in both. High-profile scandals over the allocation of mobile broadband spectrum, coal and land have undermined confidence in the government. If land cannot be easily acquired and coal supplies easily guaranteed, the private sector will shy away from investing in the power grid. Irregular electricity holds back investments in factories.
India’s panoply of regulations, including inflexible labor laws, discourages companies from expanding. As they grow, large Indian businesses prefer to substitute machines for unskilled labor.

For the full commentary, see:
ARVIND SUBRAMANIAN. “Why India’s Economy Is Stumbling.” The New York Times (Sat., August 31, 2013): A19.
(Note: ellipsis added.)
(Note: the online version of the commentary has the date August 30, 2013.)

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