Section 2
Chapter 1,887

Migrant labour, subsistence agriculture, and rural poverty in South Africa: an empirical study of living standards in three rural areas of KwaZulu

Nattrass, J.; May, J.; Peters, A.

IAAE Occasional Paper, International Association of Agricultural Economists 4: 245-249


Accession: 001886129

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This study of three black rural areas of South Africa shows that apartheid has institutionalized circulating rural-urban migration and significantly affected social and economic fabrics. The areas studied had a high male absentee rate and were poor. Incomes were unequally distributed, with the poorest 40% of households receiving only 12% of the total income and the top 10% receiving 34% of the total. Poverty was inversely related to household size, the number of migrants, education and stockholdings. Although the majority of the households had agricultural land (1-2ha), earnings from migration provided 73%-77% of household earnings, and agricultural productivity levels were very low.

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