Traoré Nohoua is an Assistant Professor at the Economics and Development Department of University Alassane Ouattara of Bouake. He is graduated from University FHB. He holds a PhD in Development Economics in 2018, under a research project sponsored by the Canadian International Development Research Center (IDRC) on the performance of enterprises in French-speaking sub-Saharan Africa: Evidence from Ivory Coast, Cameroon and Senegal. He also worked on several research projects at the Economic Policy Analysis Unit of Cires (CAPEC) as Research associate. During his PhD thesis, Nohoua has briefly worked for at LASDEL-Benin under a program of Migration, Mobility and Development in Africa (MIGDVRI) in 2016, as a Research Fellow. From January 2017 to December 2018, he worked at the Ministry of Transport as an Economist and Project analyst. His areas of interest include Migration and mobility, informal economy, Taxation, Firm Economy, Social protection, Education-entrepreneurship and the Labour economy.
Migration, gender and difficulties of access to the land in Ivory Coast
The land issue is of capital for a country like Côte d’Ivoire because of the weight of agriculture in the economic activity and the stake that land represents at the macroeconomic level. At the microeconomic level, land tenure is not only access to financial resources, but also access to food and housing, three fundamental elements for the survival of the individual (Lamarche, 2019) and a potential source of conflict between natives and immigrants . The high level of immigration to Côte d’Ivoire was the result of a policy intended and maintained by the colonial government and the local political and economic leaders of the time. Indeed, since 1930, colonisation has, in the context of forced labour, drained into Ivorian territory many West Africans, mainly Voltaic and Malians, as labour on plantations and for the production of transport infrastructure (Dozon, 2000).
After the abolition of forced labour in West Africa in 1946, although Upper Volta and Ivory Coast were once again two separate territories, a stream of high labour migration was maintained by the Interprofessional Union workforce routing (SIAMO), created in 1951 by the large Ivorian farmers who took over and strengthened the immigration policy set up by the colonial government (Dembélé, 2009).
However, the financial crisis of the 1980s, which led to the economic crisis of 1990 and the political crisis of 2000, brought about major changes in the country’s relationship with immigration and foreigners. Indeed, from 1990 onwards, immigration laws were tightened significantly. Thus, the country has moved from a policy of full integration of foreigners to a policy of very nationalistic laws and practices that exclude all immigrant populations from access to land and formal employment.
Our investigation shows that outlawed land tenure security, discrimination against women and the rationing of migrants’ subsistence rights are significant barriers to access to land. These difficulties stem upstream from the inadequacies of land management during the colonial period and conflicts related to land resources within families. But exacerbated by the shift from customary rights to property rights (Act 1998). Moreover, the complexity of rural land tenure in Ivory Coast opens the way to discrimination based on age.
Affiliation: University Alassane Ouattara of Bouaké, Ivory Coast