Blog: Understanding informality through new data
The informal business sector is a source of livelihood for millions of people around the world. Despite its size and importance, business-level data that provide an in-depth understanding and cross-country analysis of the sector are lacking. To fill this gap, the World Bank has collected comprehensive data based on a representative sample of informal businesses using an innovative survey methodology. A recent working paper provides insights on businesses that operate without formal registration. It covers twenty-four cities in seven countries —namely, India, Iraq, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mozambique, Somalia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe— using these publicly available data.
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