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Education Sector in India

Education is the key to the task of nation-building. It is also well-accepted that providing the right
knowledge and skills to the youth can ensure overall national progress and economic growth. The Indian
education system recognises the role of education in instilling the values of secularism, egalitarianism,
respect for democratic traditions and civil liberties and quest for justice.
A progressive higher education sector plays a predominant role in economic growth and development of a
nation. India, being one of the largest networks of higher education system in the world, comprises about
700 universities and over 35,000 colleges, offering education and training facilities in almost all aspects
of human creativity and intellectual endeavour. The country has an annual enrolment of over 25 million
students (including enrolment under open and distance learning system).
India claimed 10 of the top 100 places in Times Higher Education's BRICS & Emerging Economies
Rankings 2014the world's first ranking of universities in Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa,
as well as 17 other emerging economies.
Market Size
With a median age of 25 years, India has over 550 million people below the age of 25 years. According to
Census figures, over 32 per cent of the 1.1 billion population is between the age group 014 years. This
means that the number of people in India needing primary and secondary education alone exceeds the
entire population of the US. Since these students will be seeking higher education in India over the next
decade, it illustrates the sheer size of the Indian education market.
The private education sector is estimated to reach US$ 115 billion by 2018, according to consulting firm
Technopak. Technopak sees enrollments in Kindergarten-12th grade (K-12) growing to 351 million,
requiring an additional 34 million seats by 2018.
According to a report 'Education in India: Securing the demographic dividend', published by Grant
Thornton, the primary and secondary education, or K-12 sector is expected to reach US$ 50 billion in
2015 from US$ 24.5 billion in 2008, growing at an estimated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of
14 per cent.
Further, according to the report '40 million by 2020: Preparing for a new paradigm in Indian Higher
Education' released by Ernst & Young, the higher education sector in India is expected to witness a
growth of 18 per cent CAGR till 2020. At present, the sector witnesses spends of more than Rs 46,200
crore (US$ 7.68 billion), which is estimated to grow over Rs 232,500 crore (US$ 38.69 billion) in 10
The education sector in India is considered as one of the major areas for investments as the sector is going
through a strong phase of revolution, according to a report Emerging Opportunities for Private and
Foreign Participants in Higher Education by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).
The sector has attracted foreign direct investments (FDI) worth Rs 4,736.88 crore (US$ 788.43 million)
during April 2000 to September 2013, according to the data released by the Department of Industrial
Policy and Promotion (DIPP).
Some of the major investments in education and training sector in India are as follows:
Canada-based Ivey Business School and the Indian Institute of Management
Calcutta (IIMC) have signed a five-year memorandum of understanding (MoU) to
jointly develop and publish cases on India-relevant issues. The partnership will
help both institutions to foster case-based teaching.
Institute of Finance and International Management (IFIM), Bengaluru, has joined
hands with the UKs Plymouth University to encourage interaction between
faculty members and students in various academic and research activities.
Wipro has announced a US$ 2.8 million grant to nurture excellence in science
and mathematics in the US through a multi-year fellowship programme. This
initiative seeks to develop and inspire young people to contribute to excellence in
science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education, said Mr T K
Kurien, CEO, Wipro.
The Institute of Management and Technology, Ghaziabad (IMTG) has joined
hands with Arizona State University (ASU), US, to strengthen bilateral
collaborations in business management education.
Google is expanding to India an initiative to popularise the use of its Chromebook
laptops in schools, starting with a pilot project in four schools in collaboration with
Department of Information Technology, Andhra Pradesh. The project will include
using the Google Apps Training Center, an online learning environment that
offers six modules.
InterGlobe Enterprises and CAE, a Canada-based civil and military aviation
simulation training company, has launched Indias largest pilot simulation training
facility in Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh.
Government Initiatives
Dr Manmohan Singh, the Prime Minister of India, urged the country's private sector and industry to invest
in enhancing education and research in the country, as India looks to increase its gross enrolment ratio to
30 per cent by 2020.
Government support for the sector has also seen a boost, with substantial reforms and increased financial
outlays being announced and implemented. These reforms aim at not only strengthening the sector but
facilitating planned expansion of the sector.
The following are some of the major initiatives taken by the government for the infrastructural
development of the education sector:
Mr Patrick Suckling, the Australian High Commissioner to India, has announced
that 42 Indian students and researchers have won Endeavour scholarships or
fellowships to study in Australia.
The government has prepared the University Grants Commission (UGC) -
Establishment and Operation of Campuses of Foreign Educational Institutions
Rules, 2013. Under the proposed rules, Foreign Educational Institutions (FEIs)
can set up campuses in India, once they have been notified as Foreign
Education Provider (FEPs) by the UGC, subject to fulfilment of certain eligibility
The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) has proposed to provide
for 5,000 faculty positions in higher education under the Rashtriya Uchchatar
Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) during the current Five Year Plan (201217).
India and Mauritius have signed two MOUs in order to boost educational ties.
The first MoU is between IIT, Delhi and Mauritius Research Council for setting up
of an International Institute of Technology Research Academy (IITRA) in
Mauritius; and the second MoU is between Association of Indian Universities
(AIU) and Tertiary Education Council (TEC) of Mauritius for mutual recognition of
educational qualifications.
The Government of India plans to set up a framework of community colleges on
the North American model, said Dr Shashi Tharoor, Minister of State for Human
Resource Development, Government of India.
Road Ahead
India plans to enhance its formally skilled workforce through vocational education and training from the
current 12 per cent to 25 per cent by 2017, thereby adding about 70 million people in the next five years.
Hence, the higher education segment is expected to undergo intense changes and activities in terms of
foreign partnerships and foreign players entering the market in the coming years, with Indian players
rejuvenating and improvising their methodology, technology and course content to match the competition.
Exchange rate used INR 1= US$ 0.0166 as on April 9, 2014
References: Ministry of Finance, Press Information Bureau (PIB), Media Report, Ministry of Education,
Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP)
Disclaimer: This information has been collected through secondary research and IBEF is not responsible for any
errors in the same