Economy of Odisha

Economy of Odisha

Odisha’s Economic indicators

Economic growth: In 2014-15 and 2015-16, the economy of Odisha grew at 6.2%. This is higher than the growth of 3.5% in 2012-13. Service sector saw a steady improvement in annual growth, from 4.6% in 2012-13 to 9.8% in 2015-16. On the other hand, agriculture saw a volatile growth pattern, with annual growth rates fluctuating between 17.3% to -12.5%.

Economy of Odisha

Per-capita income: Odisha has a per-capita income of Rs 52,516. This is the sixth lowest in the country.


Unemployment: Unemployment rate in the state has been declining since 2012-13. In 2012-13, the unemployment rate was 5.1%, which declined to 3.8% in 2015-16.


Over 76 percent of the people are dependent on agriculture. Out of the gross cropped area of 87.46 lakh hectares, 18.79 lakh hectares are irrigated. Rice, pulses, oil seeds, jute, mesta, sugarcane, coconut and turmeric are important crops. There are also cash crops like tea, cotton and rubber. The state contributes one-tenth of the rice production in India. Jute, gram, sesame, ragi, mustard, rape and maize are second-ranking crops in different districts. District-wise, jute ranks second in Cuttack and Balasore, gram in Puri and Phulabani and Maize in Mayurbhanj. The infrastructure for the development of industry in Odisha is available.

A combination of coal, iron ore, limestone, bauxite and a host of other minerals on the one hand and port facilities on the other are the unique features in Odisha. In addition, the bountiful forest resources and agricultural products provide ample scope for the development of forest-based and agro-based industries.

The major industries of the state include cement, aluminium, ceramic glass, chemical, fertilizer, heavy water, aeronautical industry, and agro-based industries such as cotton textiles, sericulture, sugar mills and rice mills.

The economy of Odisha is a balanced mix of agricultural and industrial sectors. The Odisha economy has been boosted with the presence of modern infrastructural facilities. The transportation system has been upgraded with well-maintained road networks, an international airport at Bhubaneswar, major ports and rail network connecting all major cities of the country.

Stress has been given on the improvement of the power sector. The extensive telecom network in Odisha constitutes mostly of modern microwave systems and optical fibres. In the agricultural sector, the presence of fertile soils and favourable climate has aided Odisha to emerge as one of the leading agricultural states of the country. The state is also one of the major fish producing states.

A list of the major contributors to the Odisha economy and leading industries of the state are:

  • Agriculture
  • Forest based husbandry
  • Minerals
  • Cement
  • Paper
  • Sugar
  • Fertilizer
  • Iron and steel
  • Handloom
  • Information and technology

The steel plants in Odisha are greatly responsible for the industrial boom that the state has witnessed in the recent past. The active presence of companies and organizations like ESSAR, Steel Authority of India, POSCO, Nilachal Ispat Nigam Limited, Jindal Steel etc. has resulted in the overall improvement of the industrial scenario of the state. The significance of small scale industries like handloom and handicrafts cannot be overlooked as they contribute a considerable amount of revenue to the state’s economy.

Odisha Agriculture

Odisha Agriculture is the major contributor to the state’s economy. Agriculture is the chief occupation in Odisha. About 76% of the total working population is engaged with agriculture and agriculture related industries. The total cropped area in Odisha is 87, 46,000 Hectares and out of that 18, 79,000 Hectares are under irrigation.

Odisha is one of the largest producers of rice in India. The state grows almost one tenth of the total rice production of the country. Favourable climate and presence of rich soils accounts for the flourishing agriculture of Odisha. The main crops cultivated in the state are:

  • Rice
  • Jute
  • Oil seeds
  • Pulses
  • Coconut
  • Mesta
  • Sugarcane
  • tea
  • Rubber
  • Cotton
  • Gram
  • Mustard
  • Maize
  • Sesame
  • Ragi
  • Potato
  • Soybean

Odisha Fisheries

The Odisha Fisheries have emerged as one of the important components of the economy of the state. With a coastline of 480 Kilometres of length, vast swamp areas, numerous rivers and fresh water lakes, Odisha has a huge scope for brackish water, inland and marine fisheries.

Fresh water fisheries in Odisha include 2,56,000 Hectares of reservoirs, lakes and swamps, 1,16,000 Hectares of ponds and tanks and 1,55,000 Hectares of canals and 1,80,000 Hectares of rivers.

Brackish or salt water fisheries in Odisha include 8,100 of backwater regions, cultivated brinies adding up to 32,587 Hectares and 2,98,000 Hectares of estuaries and 79,000 Hectares of Lagoons.

Odisha Industry

The Odisha Industry is going places with excellent industrial infrastructure and presence of top national and international companies. The state has witnessed an industrial upsurge due to the favourable industrial atmosphere in the state. The state government of Odisha has invited major industrial houses of the country and abroad to invest in the state. It has achieved a considerable amount of success and several prime companies have set up their plants in the state.

The industrial structure of Odisha mainly consists of four categories:

  • Medium industries
  • Cottage industries
  • Large scale heavy industries
  • Large scale industries

The large scale medium and large scale heavy industries include the:

  • Cement industry
  • Ceramic Glass plants
  • Refractory units
  • Ferro Manganese plants
  • Aluminium industry
  • Fertilizer plants
  • Agro based industries
  • Chemical industries
  • Tyre factories
  • Aeronautical industry

Odisha Steel

Odisha Steel is an emerging sector that will supplement the industrial sphere of Odisha. The developing industries producing steel will dominate the economy of the state. The presence of raw materials in abundance in the region has resulted in attracting the big investors to the region.

In the year 2004, the government of Odisha had received 40 proposals for establishing steel plants in Odisha. The large scale steel enterprises have opted to invest in the state of Odisha. The reasons behind the sudden interest of the steel plants like TATA Steel and Ruia’s Essar Steel are the large iron ore deposits in the districts of Keojhar. The state mines 58 percent of iron ore which is an important raw material for making steel.

Odisha has deposits of the other raw material required for the production of steel in substantial quantities. The state also has a ready market for the steel products. Labour and electricity in the state are cheap which account for a low cost of production. The infrastructure of the state is also well developed that facilitates the industrial sector. These factors have lured the reputed steel companies of the country to the state.

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