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East African border towns a pain point for informal women traders

East African border towns a pain point for informal women traders

  • A rising number of informal women traders in border towns are resorting to corruption to survive.
  • Corruption, harassment, and sexual bribes is threatening the success of enterprise between African economies.
  • The World Bank estimates small-scale cross-border trade provides income to 43 percent people in Africa.

Small-scale trade remains vital in securing livelihoods in East Africa, but rampant cross-border corruption is posing a serious threat to a vital cog in this enterprise—thousands of informal women traders.

This is unlike during pre-colonial period when African communities used to travel long distances, crossing today’s “borders” to barter their goods with traders from a different ethnic group.

Why informal women traders resort to corruption

Today, enterprising communities—mostly informal women traders—at border towns resort to corruption to survive, the World Bank explains. Quite often, official border posts are marred with service delays and congestion, the perfect fodder for cross-border corruption.

With suppressed cross-border trade …

The post East African border towns a pain point for informal women traders appeared first on The Exchange.

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