Characteristics of the Workers in the Urban Informal Sector of Pakistan

Research Reports
Publication Year : 1998

The informal sector is widely considered as a crucial segment of the economy, whose mere presence convince the policy-makers to reorient the development strategy to promote jobs and equity. Accordingly, there is a need to formulate such policies to move from active discrimination against and discouragement of -informal activities towards their promotion and encouragement. Although, of late the informal sector has assumed importance in public policy statements but unfortunately very little is known about the informal sector which is considered as an efficient user of physical capital employing proportionately more un-paid family helpers, producer/supplier of such goods/services where economies-of-scale notion usually do not apply, encompasses flexibility and possesses a decentralized character. Lack of information about this sector is primarily due to the very nature of its very character.

A . R. Kemal Chief Economist, Planning Commission. Islamabad.
Zafar Mahmood, Chief of Research, Pakistan Institute of Development Econonucs. Islamabad