More than 7 million Rwandans do their banking through their cellphones, but many of the agents who facilitate the banking transactions never declared their income to the country’s tax authority. Now the tax authority has started taking a 15-percent withholding tax from these agents’ incomes with the cellphone provider, plunging some of these agents into financial turmoil.
Zambian banks demand substantial collateral and charge high interest rates for loans, so local women are increasingly turning to informal lending cooperatives, called village banking, for loans large and small. The groups operate on trust, but the high volume of money outside the formal banking sector comes with risks.
Argentina’s youth-unemployment rate is above average for the region, and many students graduate only to find a market unsuited to their skills and qualifications. But some young Argentines are taking matters into their own hands: When they can’t find a job, they create one.
High rents and high taxes present major barriers to operating a store in Kampala, especially in the city center, so more and more enterprises are making their businesses mobile. Even as the practice booms, there’s still one lingering problem: It’s illegal.
In Mexico’s employment market, some of the country’s youth are finding it difficult to get jobs in the fields they studied. Some young people have ended up in jobs they didn’t anticipate and wonder what they could have done differently.
The terrain around Hutwe, a village in DRC’s North Kivu province, has long been rich and fertile, but armed violence there in the 1990s and 2000s isolated the area. Now, the violence has abated, and a cooperative is helping farmers process and sell their high-quality coffee.
A new pricing system is the latest indication that Zimbabwe’s economic crisis is fundamentally changing how the country does business. Some vendors and consumers are praising the system – so why are the authorities discouraging it?
In a bid to boost local manufacturing, Zimbabwe in 2016 restricted imports of more than 30 goods, synthetic hair extensions among them. But the hair extensions are still available in markets, salons and beauty shops across the country. Locals are turning them into low-cost wigs for hair lovers.
Facing an acute housing shortage and the plummeting value of the Argentine peso, Argentina’s housing authority is touting a construction solution that would be both cheap and fast. But for the country’s construction industry, this solution may turn out to be a problem.