Mappila - Economy

The overpopulation of Kerala, and especially of the Malabar area, has caused many economic problems. Today, most of the unemployed are educated people from universities or training schools. Another problem is that these people cannot find work in other states because each state wants to hire its own citizens first, before absorbing any outsiders. Agriculture is the main occupation of the Kerala, although land suitable for agriculture is limited. Cash crops earn a reasonable amount from export, but this has caused a shortage for local consumption. Rubber, pepper, cardamom, coconut, cashew nuts, tea, and coffee are the major cash crops. Food staples are rice, pulses, and sorghum. The area holds great forests that yield raw materials such as bamboo, charcoal, and gum. Industrial enterprises produce bricks and tiles and do oil milling. These factories employ a sizable percentage of the Population. Still Malabar remains economically a primitive and stagnant area, and it is not surprising that in recent years tens of thousands of residents have sought work in the Persian Gulf countries.

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