Outlays have become outcomes and the components are covered in detail in the social sector, Chief Economic Adviser V Anantha Nageswaran said on Tuesday. Speaking about the components of the social sector during a press conference on Tuesday, the CEA said, “Not only the full document (of the Economic Survey) but the highlights have captured the element with outcome as well, ranging from electricity, healthcare, food security, affordable housing, drinking water and sanitation, all the way to cooking fuels, all development and skill development.” The CEA also said, “General government spending with both the Union and the state governments put together, education has gone up from Rs 5.3 lakh crore to Rs 7.6 lakh crore and healthcare almost more than double in the last three years.” Other than health and education, the CEA said, “We (our spending on social sector) have gone up from Rs 4.86 lakh crore to Rs 8.3 lakh crore approximately. Primary school dropout rate has come down from around 4.7 to 1.5 while pupil to teacher ratio has improved from 34 to 26. And, there is going to be 14,500 PM SHRI Schools soon.” According to the statement from the ministry of finance, “The government’s spending on social services has shown a rising trend since FY16 (2015-16) with a focus on many aspects of the social well-being of citizens of the country. The share of expenditure on social services in the total expenditure of the government has been around 25 per cent from FY18 to FY20. It increased to 26.6 per cent in FY23 (BE).” According to the Economic Survey, social services expenditure witnessed an increase of 8.4 per cent in FY21 over FY20 and another 31.4 per cent increase in FY22 over FY21, being the pandemic years, which required enhanced outlay, especially in the health and education sectors.
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