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Education expenditure by government of India vs. other countries (complete statistics)

perspective of educationWhere does India stand today in the world’s perspective of education?  Our official statistics say that 74% of the total masses in India is literate. Out of this, 76% belongs to male category and 54% belongs to female category. At the time of independence, only 12% of the total population was educated. There goes no doubt that the state of education has gone through a radical transformation in India since the time of independence.  The nation stands at a higher level with distinctions on many national fronts and higher rate of literacy is undoubtedly one of the most contributing factors for this. The 2011 census has indicated that rate of literacy grows at 9.2%, although the critics say that this rate of growth is comparatively lower than the growth rates in the earlier decades. Despite our achievement on the front of education, quality has suffered in the standard of imparting teaching in the government-run schools in India.

Let’s know about government’s initiative through funding the important projects for education. Both state and central governments in India claim that they have supported all the ongoing projects of education with proper funding and infrastructure.

How does funding take place for Education in India?

funding take place for Education in India As of now, education in India comes from government as well as private bodies. The funding for this purpose comes from three sources, such as central government, state government, and local bodies. Under different articles of the Indian constitution, free and compulsory education is the basic right for every child from the age of 6 to 14. In the last decades, private education has emerged as an enormous competitor of the state-run education system. As the statistics say almost 30% of the total number of children from the age of 6 to 14 now studies in the private schools. With the mushrooming growth of engineering colleges, total private participation in education market in India has come to USD 450 million as it was projected in the year 2008. With the increase in the number of schools, colleges, and other institutions, India is slowly growing to become at par with the universal education only quantitatively. But quality continues to stay dismal in the standard of education provided both by government and private institutions.

Government of India keeps a special place for allocating funds towards education in its successive FIVE- YEAR plans. During the five-year plan 2002-2007, it had fixed an expenditure of 65.6% of the total education budget of Rs 438 billion (equal amount of US$ 6.9 billion). Out of this amount, Rs 288 billion (US$ 4.55 billion) went for elementary education, while Rs 43.25 billion (US$ 680 million) was for secondary education and Rs 12.5 billion (US$ 200 million) for adult education. The government also allocated Rs 41.765 billion (US$ 660 million) towards higher education and Rs 47 billion (US$740 million) for technical education.

In the year 2011-12, the central government’s expenditure towards education was Rs 389.57 billion (US$ 6.22 billion). Out of it, a major part from this amount went towards ‘Sarba Shikya abhiyaan’, which is the official flagship programme of department of education in India.

As per one finding from one survey, Indian government spends 1.75% of its total GDP on the elementary education, while the private spending forms 0.71% of GDP. This is the combined spending by state and central governments.  As per a study, average spending on education of a person by the government comes to around Rs 11, 225 (US$ 179.31).

Let’s compare this figure with the expenditure incurred by the top five nations in the world.

United Kingdom

United KingdomUnited Kingdom stands shoulder to shoulder with U.S.A. with its 99% literacy. Spending 5.6% of its total GDP, it takes the burden of education of every child up to the age of 17. Like U.S.A., it is also a major spender in scientific studies in the world. The average spending per student by the government comes to US$ 9,980.07. United Kingdom is a major spender of all the scientific and research studies.


SwedenSweden has stayed a leading nation in offering highest salaries to its newly appointed teachers. With 7.3% spending of its GDP in education, it spends on an average US$ 10,044.38 on education of a student. As it’s every child attends school until the age of 16, it has attained 99% literacy rate in its masses. Sweden is one of the leading nations to encourage scientific achievements in defense studies.

United States of America

United States of AmericaUnited States of America has achieved 99% literacy and it spends $ 11,825.89 per student. But as it is the wealthiest nation on earth, it spends the highest amount on the education of every student. Spending 5.4% of the total GDP, this nation has always encouraged scientific studies and it is the topmost spender in research projects all over the world.


 NorwayNorway has its incredible story of 100% literacy rate of its masses. As internationally, it has the topmost place for quality in the education system it spends an incredible figure of US$ 13,066.64 on the education of every student.  With 7.3% of spending in its total GDP on education, it is also one of the nations to offer the teachers highest wages.


LuxembourgNot only Luxembourg offers highest salaries to its teachers, it spends US$ 19, 049.81 on the education of every student. An average child attends school up to the age of 14 in this nation. It has also achieved 100% literacy rate in its masses.  With its 9.00% spending in GDP towards education, this nation has highest appreciation from other nations for its remarkable quality in education.  As it pays on an average US$ 80,000 to a teacher with 10 years experience, this figure is the highest in the world so far as wages in the academics goes. The quality introduced in the primary to tertiary teaching standard of this nation has earned wide acclaim from the entire world. This nation with its superb system of education does not find parallel anywhere in the world.