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Erasmus Universiteit (2014)

Complexities of Informal Cross Border Trade : Vulnerabilities and Coping Strategies among Traders in Namanga, Kenya

Aluoch, Pauline Dianne

Titre : Complexities of Informal Cross Border Trade : Vulnerabilities and Coping Strategies among Traders in Namanga, Kenya

Auteur : Aluoch, Pauline Dianne

Université de soutenance : Erasmus Universiteit

Grade : MASTER OF ARTS IN DEVELOPMENT STUDIES 2014

Résumé
We live in a transient era though something’s are not transitory, for example the informal sector. The previous perception and lack of knowledge regarding the sector is quickly changing. This is as a result of the realization of the importance that the sector plays in contributing livelihood options to people especially those who are deprived – the poor, vulnerable and those at risk. This study seeks to find out vulnerabilities suffered by informal cross border traders and how they tend to cope with them. It is assumed that there are different types of entrepreneurs in Namanga and that they face vulnerability differently because of their asset portfolio. The research strategy used was qualitative analysis to obtain the informal cross border trade data. Data was collected from interviews, journals, published reports and blogs. This paper challenges the argument that there are distinct characteristics of identifying entrepreneurs’ especially micro businesses at the borderland. This is clearly shown by the similar coping strategies that they develop despite the assumption in the literature that the two groups of entrepreneurs are different. Interestingly, in regards to the outcomes, the entrepreneurs’ shows contrasting features despite similar vulnerabilities that they suffer which can be attributed to the amount of social capital (asset) that they have. This research paper acknowledges that coping strategies develop by these entrepreneurs are only to act as a buffer for resilience in the short run and cannot be therefore said to be sustainable. Considering that the vulnerability suffered by the informal cross border traders can partly be attributed to the poor policy and regulatory environment, the national government therefore needs to update its policies regarding the sub sector – the informal cross border trade.

Mots clés : Informal, trade, Livelihood, Entrepreneurship, necessity driven, Survivalist, Growth oriented or Opportunity driven, Vulnerability, Assets

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Page publiée le 21 octobre 2016, mise à jour le 12 octobre 2018