Agriculture is the main occupation and the chief source of livelihood of the people in the district. The economy of the district is gradually developing with the implementation of different development programmes and diversification in occupational structure of the workforce. A brief description of broad economic trends in the district is presented in this chapter.
The primary sector, and more particularly agriculture, is the main source of livelihood of people of Deogarh district. Agriculture accounts for about one-fourth of the district domestic product and agriculture provides engagement to more than 75 per cent of the total workers. The district has rich natural resources. Forest coverage is 53.06 percent of total geographical area of the district and it provides livelihood to a large mass of tribal population. The district is also endowed with abundant water resources. Rivers like the Brahmani and Tikira and the reservoirs like Rengali and Gohira dams have immensely contributed to the livelihood of the people. Many people earn their livelihood through mining and quarrying by raising minor mineral and construction materials. Though the district does not have any large scale industry, the 18 small scale industries and 144 cottage industries based on forest produce and other available natural resources provide employment and livelihood to a large number of people. In Deogarh district, agriculture, horticulture and forestry have good potential of growth and development for providing a diversified livelihood pattern to the people. Government programmes are trying to strengthen these activities to make them sustainable sources of livelihoods.