Kerala registers higher growth rate amidst India's economic slowdown

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Thiruvananthapuram: As an economic slowdown grips the rest of India, the country's southern state seems to be heading forwards beating all odds.

The Economic Survey for 2018-2019 tabled by the Kerala government in the Assembly on Thursday ahead of its budget showed a higher growth rate with the state's Gross Domestic Product at 7.5 per cent during the period as against 7.3 per cent in 2017-18.

According to the survey, though the growth rate was on a higher side, agriculture and allied sector growth declined.

"The agriculture and allied sector growth declined to (-)0.5 per cent during 2018-19 from a growth rate of 1.7 per cent in 2017-18," it said.

The survey also said contribution of secondary and tertiary sectors improved from 2017-18.

"In 2017-18, the contribution from secondary sector was 27.7 per cent at constant prices and 25 per cent at current prices.

Among the sectors, the highest growth was in the secondary sector with 8.8 per cent growth at constant (2011-12) prices followed by tertiary sector (8.4 per cent)," the survey said.

It also said the growth in secondary sector was mainly due to a spurt in the manufacturing sector.

The survey said the total turnover of State Public Sector Undertakings under Industries Department in 2018-19 was Rs 3,442.74 crore, an increase of 17.9 per cent from 2017-18.

It said the state has an internet penetration rate of 54 per cent and it was the second highest in the country.

The survey, citing the National Sample Survey Office, said women in Kerala were far ahead in terms of computer literacy and basic internet knowledge.

"In rural areas, 35.1 per cent of women in Kerala have basic internet knowledge. The all India level is 8.5 per cent.

In case of urban areas, 41.7 per cent women in Kerala have basic internet knowledge (30.1 per cent at national level). Kerala is the first State to make internet access a basic right," a release issued by the finance department said.

According to quick estimates for 2018-19, Kerala's per capita income is Rs 1.48 lakh as against the national average of Rs 93,655.

"In other words, average income per person in Kerala was approximately 1.6 times the Indian average in 2018-19," it said.

Finance minister Thomas Isaac will present the state budget on Friday.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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