Economy of Himachal Pradesh
From being considered as the most backward state of the country to the stages of advancement, Himachal Pradesh has succeeded to rewrite its phases of development. This most sought after tourist destination has a large number of guests throughout the year and thus its economy is increasing day after day. Yes, the economy generated by the state is mostly because of the tourists and the travel sector. Now, the state is considered to be among the best states of the country as is a tourist center attracting the most number of foreigners. Himachal Pradesh has had interesting records and more opening vistas for the future. Ranging from tourism, agriculture, real estate the list goes on and on up to mineral resources, fishing, animal husbandry in which the state has proved its economic prosperity throughout the year. Scroll further to know more about the economic contributions of each sector towards the state.
Economy of Himachal Pradesh
Agriculture is the major source of income and employment for over 93% of the people of Himachal. It has its contributions up to 45% to the net state domestic product. Still the agriculture has certain limitations especially during the cultivation of food grains. It is neither economical nor beneficial to reclaim the land on the slopes for cultivation of the food grains. This may also increase the risk of soil erosion which is a major loss for the farmers. The main cereals grown in the state covers wheat, maize, rice mainly grown in Kangra, Mandi district and barley in the district of Shimla. The fruit cultivation of the state has proved to be a boom for the farmers. The availability of various sectors of land for fruit cultivation aids their efforts and the yield per acre is also higher. One would have constantly come across the specialties of the apples of Himachal as they harvest the maximum income of the state. Himachal Pradesh is more often referred to as the ‘Apple State of India’. The Government of the state has also sustained the support to the farmers with the revolutionary land reforms in 1954.
The industries also contribute to the economy of the state in various ways. Such as the electronics industry, furniture, cement, sericulture and many others have significant contributions which enhance the economic status of the state. Some of the electronic centres are: Solan, Mandi, Hamirpur, Shogi, Raga-Ka-Bagh, Chamba, Ambi, Taliwala and Keylong. Also, handicraft, mining, Hydel resources, tourism and animal husbandry form an important part. During the last few years great importance has been laid to ecology and the industries which cause water and air pollution are not encouraged.
The mineral wealth of any state holds great significance when dealing with the growth of the industries and in turn leads to the economic development as well. The mineral resources present in the vast landscape of the state have brought to it the status of being the most sought after industrial destination in the country. Though not found in abundance, minerals such as limestone, gypsum, rock salt, slates and building stone are in great demand when dealing with the industrial sectors of the state. Still the state is facing from unfavorable climatic conditions, inadequate machinery for mining and attributes to the poor mineral industry of the state. As the highest peaks of the state are covered with snow during the winter months, they are usually inaccessible to locate the reservoirs of Mineral Resources.
This principal catalyst holds a great deal in its contributions towards the economic growth of the state. As major national and international agencies approach the state, it provides the place an industrial picture. Thus, this helps to develop the infrastructure of Himachal Pradesh as well.
About eight national highways run through the state totaling a distance of 1235 km. In addition to this, it also has a large network of highways and village roads. It greatly influences the economy of the state as most of the tourist destinations such as Manali, Shimla and Dharamsala are connected by roads. As some of the roads during extreme weather remains closed, the railway and air services are quite prevalent.
In Himachal Pradesh, animal husbandry has an important role in the development of the agricultural sector. Major schemes have been assigned for the development of the cattle, its health, treatment of diseases, milk supply schemes, veterinary education etc. Also, there are numerous mobile dispensaries which are in operation.