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Rural Migration Blog

March 2019

Unauthorized Foreigners in the US

A quarter of the 44 million foreign-born residents are unauthorized. The fate of these unauthorized foreigners, and how to prevent more from arriving, has dominated immigration reform debates since the enactment of the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986.

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US Labor Force Participation

The US labor force participation rate, the share of persons 16 and older who are employed or looking for work, peaked at 67 percent in early 2001 and has since fallen to 63 percent. The employment-to-population ratio, the share of those 16 and older who are employed, follows a similar pattern, viz, peaking soon after 2000, falling sharply during and after the 2008-09 recession, and climbing as the unemployment rate fell to four percent.

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Global and African Population

The world’s population of 7.7 billion in 2018 is growing by 82 million or a Germany a year. The global population is projected to continue increasing, rising to almost 10 billion in 2050 and over 11 billion in 2100.

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South African Agriculture

South Africa is the world’s 25th largest country in area, but only an eighth of its land, some 80 million hectares, can be used to grow crops, and only three percent of this crop land is considered prime farm land. Agriculture contributes three percent to SA GDP, compared with 13 percent for manufacturing, eight percent for mining, and 76 percent for services.

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