South African migration policy: A gendered analysis

A roadside vendor sells tomatoes, onions and green peppers at the Alexandra township, near Johannesburg, South Africa. Image: Getty, Monirul Bhuiyan/AFP

The 2017 White Paper on International Migration to South Africa proposes a policy framework to guide a comprehensive review of South Africa’s international migration policy, including asylum and refugee legislation.


  • This policy insights paper examines the intersection between gender and migration in South Africa.
  • South Africa is experiencing changing gender migration patterns that have been largely neglected by migration legislation.
  • As such, South Africa is unable to mitigate and respond to the risks and vulnerabilities migrant’s experience.
  • The country is also unable to harness the development potential of women migrating to South Africa.
  • This paper unpacks the complex vulnerabilities and experiences for women migrants, and how the framework proposed by the 2017 White Paper on International Migration to South Africa fails to address these experiences.
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