n Studies in Economics and Econometrics - A poverty profile of the Western Cape Province of South Africa

Volume 27, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0379-6205


Poverty reduction and alleviation is a main priority of the South African government. For the Western Cape government to successfully formulate and implement well-targeted policies aimed at reducing poverty, it is important to identify exactly who the province's poor are. This study aims to determine the extent of poverty in the province and construct a clear profile of the poor, using data from the 1995 October Household Survey. The analysis shows that poverty is less severe in the province than in South Africa as a whole, and that poverty is concentrated amongst Coloureds and amongst females. The poor are most often found in urban areas, they have low levels of education and live in relatively large households that are often headed by women. Poor individuals, if they are employed, are most likely to be engaged in elementary occupations and are less likely than non-poor individuals to be unionised.

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