Rural-Urban Relations and Agrarian Development in Kutus Area, Kenya

Citation:
Ngau PM. Rural-Urban Relations and Agrarian Development in Kutus Area, Kenya .; 1989.

Abstract:

A considerable flow of resources takes place at the household level from urban to rural and from non-agrictl~tural to agricultural activities by way of urban-rural remittances, nonfarm income, and return migration~ The potential of this flow of resources in spurring rural economic development has ~~ . been accordel~~-ittle significance in development theory and planning. This dissertation uses data from Kutus area, Kenya to show how rural-urban exchange relations drive rural development. First, it investigates the relationship between farm income, xi the propensity to earn income from sources other than the farm, and agricultural production and productivity. Next, it examines where rural households earn their incomes, where they spend and invest it, and the consequences for economic development in the Kutus area. The analysis demonstrates that the use of nonfarm income enables rural households in Kutus area to raise agricultural output, productivity, and farm income. The study also reveals that rural household economic behavior is highly oriented towards spending and re-investing in the local area spurring the grewth of nonfarm acti vi ties in Kutus town and lower market centers. Growth of smallholder production and rural economy has been the main engine of Kenya's sustained economic growth. There is still considerable scope for further development of agriculture. The study emphasizes establishment of rural development policies that encompass both agriculture and non farm activities, rural as well as urban areas, and the need to re-orient institutional infrastructure for rural ,. development to make it more responsive to smallholder production.

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