Working Paper

What has been Happening to Internal Labour Migration in South Africa, 1993-1999?

“The data that are available in nationally
representative household surveys for the period 1993 to 1999 were explored. Three questions are being posed. First, what is the extent of temporary labour migration within South Africa and what trends emerge in this migration? Second, who are the migrant workers, have there been any recorded changes and what would account for these changes? Third, what kinds of ties are labour migrants retaining with their households of origin and how have these ties changed over time? The objective of the paper is not to provide comprehensive answers to these questions. Given the constraints imposed by the extent, quality and comparability of existing data, much of our analysis is simply descriptive and suggestive. However, the study seeks to highlight possible trends and relationships that could be explored further both in more qualitative research, and data permitting, in future empirical analysis.”