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India By State - Goa - State Overview

State Overview

Economic Snapshot

Capital Panaji
Area (sq km) 3,702
Population (Census 2001, million) 1.34
NSDP Growth (1999-00 to 2005-06) 8.84 per cent
NSDP at current prices in 2007 US$ 3 billion
Annual Per Capita Income at current prices in 2006-07 US$ 1544.7
National Highways Length (km) 269
International Airport Dabolim Airport. International and domestic flights
Domestic Airports No domestic Airports
Key Industries Tourism, Food processing, Information technology, Mining, Biotechnology, Pharmaceuticals, and fishing
Industries with Growth Potential Tourism

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Goa is India's smallest state encompassing an area of 3702 km2. Located on the west coast of India in a region known as Konkan, It is bounded by the state of Maharashtra to the north and by Karnataka to the east and south, while the Arabian Sea forms its western coast.

The Zauri and Mandovi rivers drain 69% of Goa’s geographic Area and are two of the busiest rivers in India.

Situated near the Arabian Sea, hot and humid weather is the climate all year round. Panaji is the state capital; however Vasco da Gama is the largest and more populated city.

Goa is the richest state in India with a GDP per capita two and a half times that of the country as a whole. Eleventh Finance Commission ranked number one for its infrastructure and ranked top for the best quality of life in India by the National Commission on population.


The population of Goa is 1.344 million making it the fourth smallest, by population, state in India. The decadal growth rate is 14.9%.

Population Demographics:

  • Population Density: 363 inhabitants per square km
  • Urban Population: 49.76%
  • Gender Ratio: 960 females to 1000 males
  • Literacy Rate: 82%
  • Male Literacy Rate: 89%
  • Female Literacy Rate: 76%
  • Decadal Growth Rate: 14.9%

Religion: 65% Hindu, 26% Christians, 6% Muslims, 0.07% Sikhs, and 0.34% other religions.

As per census 2001, 0.52 million of the population made up the workforce and over 85% of the workforce were main workers both skilled and unskilled. The availability of both skilled and unskilled workers makes Goa an attractive investment destination.

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Goa is the richest state in India with a GSDP of US$ 3 billion at current prices in 2007. Its GDP per capita in comparison to the rest of India is that of two and a half times more than that of the country as a whole and growing at a rate of 8.84% is one of the fastest growth rates.

The main contributor to the state GDP is the tertiary sector with travel and tourism accounting for the majority of it. However its percentage contribution has started decreasing due to the growth (at 12.8%) of the secondary sector. The construction sector (which accounts for one fifth of the secondary sector) grew at 31.4% between 2000 and 2004. Goa handles over 12% of all foreign tourist arrivals in India.

Goa also has the lowest percentage of its population under the poverty line with only 12% considered to be below it, which is lower than the percentage for the whole of India which stands at 21.8%. Distribution of households by income shows that Goa’s share of high income households (households which come under the higher income categories) was greater than that for All-India, even when considering both urban and rural.

Many leading companies specialising in areas such as, tyres and tubing, cement, electrical machinery, fish net making machines, pharmaceutical machines, and so on are starting to use Goa as a manufacturing base.

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Physical Infrastructure



There is 9,762km of roads of which 71% are surfaced. The density of roads per 1000 sq km of area, 2613 km, and per lakh population, 720km, is higher than the national average of 730km per 1000 sq km and 284km per lakh population. Goa’s government and privately owned buses which provide the majority of the public transport in the state. KTC has 432 vehicles that operate over 87, 690 km per day. An intra city service is also available in large towns such as Panjim and Margoa.

Along with the bus service hired forms of transport are also available in the form of metered and unmetered taxis, and, in urban areas auto rickshaws. Also available, and unique to Goa, is the motorcycle taxi which transport single riders.


Goa has just the sole airport, Dabolim airport, which is both a civilian and military airport catering to both domestic and international flights. Goa receives flights from all over the world and is currently ranked eighth in all-India air traffic.


Goa has over 250km of rivers and canals, providing an economical mode of transport for goods.

The Mormungoa harbour near the city of Vasco handles mineral ore, petroleum, coal and international containers. Over 39% of the total iron ore export from India is done from this harbour with over 23 million tonnes of iron-ore being exported annually to China, Japan, Korea, and European countries.

The river Navigation department, which is in charge of the transport systems available in the five main rivers in the state, provide safe and dependable transport facilities at different ferry routes of inland waters in the state.


Goa is connected to other parts of India through 69 rail routes. The improvement to The Konkan Railway has increased the scope of trade and tourism considerably. A new direct rail line between Goa and the capital, New Delhi, has been implemented making trading with the capital easier.


Goa produces 394 MW of power and with a demand of only 305 MW the state can be classed as a power surplus state, it also means that Goa is amongst only a few Indian states that have 100% rural electrification. Per capita Goa’s power consumption in 2006-07 was 1,603 kWh.

Industry uses 50% of the total available power units but contributes approximately 60% of the power revenue.


Goa has excelled in the telecommunications department over the years resulting in it being only the second state to achieve 100% automatic telephone system, with an excellent network of telephone exchanges.

Further acknowledgment of Goa’s achievements in communications was proven by Research done in 2005 which showed that Goa had on average 145 telephones per 1000 inhabitants which was all most thirty times higher than the All-India average of only 5 telephones per 1000 inhabitants.

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Social Infrastructure


Goa possesses one of the highest literacy rates in India with literacy rates at an impressive 82%. Approximately 89% of males and 76% of females are literate. The education infrastructure in Goa is slightly different to the rest of India. The educational infrastructure in Goa consist of 1,224 Primary Schools, 436 middle level education institutes, 372 secondary level education institutes, 81 higher secondary level institutes, 35 vocational and professional institutes, 25 colleges for general education, and 20 colleges for professional education which are all affiliated with The University of Goa.

Goa is also home to the Prestigious National Institute of Oceanography (NIO), an oceanographic laboratory of international repute with main focus on understanding of special oceanographic features of the northern Indian Ocean.


Goa has a well established medical infrastructure; there are 137 hospitals in Goa of which 14 are state run and 123 are private, there are also 29 rural medical dispensaries. The range of medical care available in Goa means that healthcare is available to most the inhabitants of the state. The doctor to population ratio is a lot better than the all-India average, in Goa the ratio is 1:636 whereas in the rest of India the ratio is 1:1607.

The state boasts better health ratios as compared to the national average:




Birth Rate (per thousand persons) 24.8 15.95
Death Rate (per thousand persons) 8.1 7.46
Infant Mortality rate (per thousand live births) 63 16

Life expectancy at birth (years)

Male 64.1 71.6
Female 65.4 75.0

Source: Census 2001


Goa boasts one of the best banking infrastructures in India. It is ranked top in the country for the amount of households covered per bank. The All-India average is over 16000 people per bank office whereas in Goa it is an impressive 2892 people per bank office.

There are 41 commercial banks in Goa with 360 branches, 2244 co-operative societies and 255 primary agricultural credit societies. Data collected in March 2006 showed that over 300 kisan credit cards were issued by co-operative banks and 2,516 kisan credit cards were issued by commercial banks. Banking offices in Goa were said to have over 3 million deposit accounts. Goa is third in terms of per capita deposits in India, only Delhi and Chandigarh have higher per capita deposits, the per capita deposits in Goa are US$ 2482 compared to the figure of US$420 for the rest of India.

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Industrial Infrastructure

Goa has established 20 industrial estates in all 11 talukas, with at least 1 industrial estate in each taluka.

The state of Goa has set up the Goa Industrial Development Corporation (GOA-IDC) to aid in securing and assisting rapid and orderly establishment of industries in industrial areas and estates.


Goa’ primary income is from tourism, Goa handles 12% of all foreign tourist arrivals in India. In 2004 there were more than 2 million tourists that visited Goa 400 000 of which were from abroad.

The main focus of tourism in Goa is on the coastal areas with some of the best beaches in the world located in Goa. Having been ruled by the Portuguese for 450 years the culture in Goa is distinct and completely different to the rest of India. Goa is famous for its excellent beaches, churches and temples.

Flora and fauna….

Goa has 1424km2 of equatorial forest cover most of which 1224.38km2 is government owned. The majority of the forest cover is located in the interior eastern regions of the state, within the Western Ghats (which form most of eastern Goa). The area of forest cover has been identified as an area of internationally recognized biodiversity hotspots of the world. The national geographic magazine, in 1999, compared Goa with the Amazon and Congo basins for it rich tropical biodiversity.

Goa’s wildlife sanctuaries boast of more than 1512 documented species of plants, over 275 species of bird, over 48 kinds of animals and over 60 genera of reptiles.

The main food crop grown is rice but Goa is also home to many exotic foods such as coconuts, pineapples, mangos, bananas, cashew nuts, areca nuts, and sugarcane.

Numerous types of fish are caught off the vast coastline in the state resulting in the fishing industry contributing a large proportion to the state GSDP. The range of fish includes crabs, lobsters, shrimps, jellyfish, oysters, and catfish which all contribute to the vast variety of food dishes available in the state.

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More Information on Goa

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