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Generating livelihoods: a study of urban squatter settlements in Solomon Islands

CollectionsPacific Economic Bulletin (1991-2010)
Title: Generating livelihoods: a study of urban squatter settlements in Solomon Islands
Author(s): Maebuta, Helen Esther
Maebuta, Jack
Publisher: Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University
Asia Pacific Press
This article reports the results of a survey of the livelihoods of 208 households in squatter settlements in Solomon Islands. The main sources of household income are selling betel-nuts and cigarettes and working in full-time and casual unskilled jobs. Those individuals generating incomes make up 28 per cent of total household members. Of those household members generating incomes, 46.6 per cent are females. Some 50.5 per cent of the respondents did not have existing savings to start their income-generating activities. The average income from informal activities is two times more than the average fortnightly income from casual and full-time employment and 1.5 times more than the national minimum wage. This analysis draws a number of implications from the findings. These include building a traditional marketplace for selling betel-nut, the need for the government to fast track the implementation of development projects in the larger provinces, the need for research to investigate if low-income earners are paid at the minimum wage rate or lower, the need for relevant government departments and non-governmental organisations to conduct community-based short courses in the settlements that focus on appropriate income-generating enterprises, and the need for in-depth study into employment regulations and conditions in Solomon Islands.
ISSN: 1834-9455 (online)
0817-8038 (print)


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