Convergence of Fertility Levels between Native South Africans and Former Refugees of Mozambican Origin in Agincourt, Rural Northeast of South Africa from 1993-2009

Latifat D. G. Ibisomi, University of the Witwatersrand
Jill Williams, University of Colorado at Boulder
Benn Sartorius, University of the Witwatersrand
Kathleen Kahn, University of the Witwatersrand
Mark Collinson, University of the Witwatersrand
Michel Garenne, Institut Pasteur

Using longitudinal data from the Agincourt Health and socio-Demographic Surveillance System (AHDSS) in rural South Africa, this paper examines the role of former Mozambican refugees on the fertility decline and stall in the AHDSS from 1993 to 2009. The AHDSS fertility trend is decomposed to quantify the relative contribution of the Mozambicans to fertility changes. Further, we compare trend in selected demographic, socio-cultural and economic characteristics of the two populations that might impact on fertility. Preliminary results show evidence of stalls in fertility decline at the AHDSS. The stalls are attributable to stalls in fertility decline among South African women. Over the period examined, Mozambican fertility fell significantly and approached the level of native South Africans. Additionally we find a convergence between Mozambican and South African women across a range of socio-cultural, economic, and demographic characteristics. The findings suggest adaptation of Mozambican refugees to characteristics of native South African.

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Presented in Session 23: Fertility Transition in Africa