Unfriendly Neighbours: Contemporary Migration from Zimbabwe to Botswana

"This report focuses on understanding the nature and implications of the most recent phase of movement from Zimbabwe to Botswana. The first section of the report examines the evidence for the number of Zimbabweans in Botswana. As in South Africa, the numbers are frequently exaggerated by the media and in official pronouncements. However, arriving at a precise number is impossible. Botswana does keep good migration statistics and these provide insights into changing forms of legal movement between the two countries but the numbers of undocumented migrants are unknown. The following sections of the report examine the nature of contemporary migration between Zimbabwe using data from a SAMP survey of Zimbabweans in Botswana conducted in 2011. In addition to a profile of the migrants, issues such as migrant employment, circular migration and remitting behaviour are examined. The report provides evidence that many migrants have been badly treated but, at the same time, the majority retain a favourable impression of Botswana and its people. Finally, the report examines whether large-scale migration from Zimbabwe is likely to continue and what the prospects are for return migration in the future."