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Theme: Informal Economy
Occupational Group(s): Other Groups ; Street Vendors
Region(s): Sub-Saharan Africa
Durban South Africa AeT selected as 2017 Social Design Circle Honoree Curry Stone Design Prize . (2 June 2017)

Asiye Etafuleni (AeT) has been recognized as a 2017 Social Design Circle Honoree by the Curry Stone Design Prize in the category "Can design reclaim public space?" for their work on the urban inclusion of informal workers.

South África Industrious migrants are an opportunity for South Africa Weekend Argus . (10 January 2016)

Mean Streets book coverMean Streets: Migration, Xenophobia and Informality in South Africa, edited by Jonathan Crush, Abel Chikanda and Caroline Skinner, power¬fully demonstrates that some of the most resourceful entrepreneurs in the South African informal economy are migrants and refugees. Yet far from being lauded, they take their life into their hands when they trade on South Africa’s “mean streets”. This book draws attention to what they bring to their adopted country through research into previously unexamined areas of migrant entrepreneurship. Ranging from studies of how migrants have created agglomeration economies in Jeppe and Ivory Park in Johannesburg, to guanxi networks of Chinese entrepreneurs, to competition and cooperation among Somali shop owners, to cross-border informal traders, to the informal transport operators between South Africa and Zimbabwe, the chapters in this book reveal the positive economic contributions of migrants. These include generating employment, paying rents, providing cheaper goods to poor consumers, and supporting formal sector wholesalers and retailers. As well, Mean Streets highlights the xenophobic responses to migrant and refugee entrepreneurs and the challenges they face in running a successful business on the streets.  For further details see African Books Collective.

Players in Zimbabwe’s informal sector have often complained of harassment by both municipal and the Zimbabwe Republic police despite the valuable contribution that they make to the country’s economy, with government failing to recognise them as an important cog in the country’s fight to turn around its fortunes.

Zimbabwe Life Tough for Zimbabweans in Nation's Economically Devastated City Voice of America . (16 June 2015)
By Shava, Taurai.

Some Zimbabweans living in the country’s second biggest city, Bulawayo, once regarded as the nation’s industrial hub, say current economic problems bedeviling the nation are making it difficult for them to make ends meet.

Ghana Informal sector workers unionize Citi FM Online . (11 March 2015)

The Trades Union Congress (TUC) has inaugurated the Union of Informal Workers Association (UNIWA) as its 19th affiliate. UNIWA is Ghana’s first Trade Union for Workers in the informal economy.

Workers in the informal sector, predominantly street traders, are demanding inclusion in the national decision making processes, especially in fee-fixing and tax collection at the assemblies.

South África SCA upholds appeal in Somali Association of South Africa and five others Lawyers for Human Rights . (29 September 2014)

In a great victory, the SCA has upheld LHR’s appeal against the dismissal of the case that challenged the unlawful closure of refugee and asylum seeker traders’ informal businesses by police in Limpopo. LHR has been representing the Somali Association of South Africa and Ethiopian Community of South Africa. In its judgment, the SCA made it clear that the attitude of police and Home Affairs was unacceptable and contrary to constitutional values.

South África Main challenges of organising vulnerable workers Business Report . (28 March 2014)
By Horn, Pat.

Workers are vulnerable to dismissal, to bad health and safety conditions, and to pay that does not meet their needs.

Zimbabwe Giving Zimbabwean Women Rights in the Informal Sector Radio Netherlands Worldwide . (7 May 2013)
By Moyo, Jeffrey.

Mollin, a single mother of three from Harare’s low-income suburb of Hatcliffe, fears being arrested by the council police as she sells fruit, vegetables and second-hand clothes in the city centre without a permit.

Ghana 3rd Informal Economy Conference Held In Accra Government of Ghana Portal . (18 April 2013)

The Trades Union Congress (TUC) has begun paying closer attention to the organisation of informal economy workers into their ranks to ensure their protection, provide them with voice and representation and to mobilize them to be part of the trades union movement.


Note: This story originally appeared on the Government of Ghana website but is no longer available.