Credit apartheid, migrants, mines and money

Various agents – rural patriarchs, traders, government authorities, appliance retailers – have used techniques to keep wages beyond migrants’ control. Paradoxically, similar techniques have, on occasion, been eagerly embraced by migrants themselves, who know that these resources will need to be husbanded for the upkeep of home. This article explores these contradictions, showing that recent forms of debt build on expectations born of forms of credit that proliferated earlier, but differ in consolidating these forms of credit to produce an unimpeded flow of money into migrants’ bank accounts and out of them again. It looks at the advantages and dangers of the recent expansion of credit to constituencies – like migrants – where it previously did not reach.

  • Date: 06/11/2014
  • Sector: Any
  • Topics: Inclusive finance, Sustainable enterprises, Workers' rights
  • Regions: Africa
  • Resource type: Publications
  • Institutions: African Studies