Overview 2
Catalyst 2
Summary 2
Major companies choose to sell directly to street vendors, circumventing traditional routes 5
Some companies have demonstrated how to accommodate a different way of doing business 5
Companies can change products to suit informal economy 6
Banking products are changing informal business, helping to bring many closer to formalization 7
Share offerings are now available to informal economy businesses 8
Government crackdowns are bad for ordinary people and economic performance 9
Attempts to shut down informal economy in Lagos caused mayhem for many people living in poverty 9
Iconic street food of Bangkok has not been exempt from heavy handed governance 10
India removed 86% of cash in circulation, harming many poor people in the informal economy 11
Informal economy has major impact on wealth - it must be aided, not discarded 12
Informal economy serves those who require it the most, helping growth by providing employment and services 12
Some countries are becoming much better at taxing informal businesses 13
Informal economy is helping to improve the health of poor people, enabling greater economic activity 13
Informal businesses are functioning closer to formal companies 14
Governments can influence scale of informal economy 16
Brazil created an incentive system to increase business registration 16
Indian government passes street vendor law, but it resembles a thinly veiled threat rather than granting legitimacy 16
Governments in developed countries have influence on informal economy too 17
Bribery: commonly associated with informal work, it also afflicts formal companies 19
Informal economy bribery is essential, creating a problem for moving towards formalization 19
Although commonly associated with informal traders, bribery afflicts incorporated companies 20
Conclusions 21
Informal economy is an opportunity, not a threat 21
Appendix 22
Sources 22
Further Reading 22
Ask the analyst 23
About MarketLine 23
Disclaimer 23

List of Figures
Figure 1: Share of the economy which is informal, average 1999-2007 5
Figure 2: MTN street store in Nigeria 6
Figure 3: Spaza store in South Africa 7
Figure 4: Proportion of products sold informally on Nigerian streets, 2015 9
Figure 5: Bangkok Street food market 10
Figure 6: Rate of poverty in Nigeria by area, 2010 12
Figure 7: International food prices according to Food Price Index 14
Figure 8: Street vendor in Delhi 17
Figure 9: Lowest share of the economy taken by the informal economy, average 1999-2007 18
Figure 10: Percentage of people in India who consider organizations to be corrupt 19
Figure 11: Ranking on the corruption index, 2016 20