Small-scale cross-border trade – often referred to as informal cross-border trade – is a pervasive phenomenon in Africa. As such, it holds fundamental social and economic development implications. Across the continent, countless small-scale traders cross borders daily to sell goods or services in a neighbouring country. Although estimates vary, this type of trade represents around half of total intra-African trade, according to the FAO. The authors of a policy brief published by the African Development Bank further estimated that such trading activities contribute to the income of about 43 percent of Africans, thereby revealing their economic significance.
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