Where do Limpopo's residents move to?


Limpopo is an interesting province in that the province seems to be losing more of its residents to other provinces than gaining from others. The Census 2022 statistics give some insight into where most of these residents relocated to.

By far the biggest “collector” of residents from the northernmost province is Gauteng. Just over 164,000 of this province’s residents indicated that they had previously lived in Limpopo. The second-most popular province to relocate to is Mpumalanga, with 21,228 former Limpopo residents. North West became the new home for 15,060 former Limpopo residents in 2022.

In towns such as Louis Trichardt, a theory exists that many of its residents relocated to the Western Cape and the Eastern Cape over the past decade or so. This may be true, but because the census figures do not provide a breakdown of income levels, confirming this is difficult.

The Western Cape recorded 7,705 residents who listed Limpopo as a previous province of residence. In the Eastern Cape, 3,647 residents had relocated from Limpopo.

The percentage of people who moved from other provinces to Limpopo is very low. The biggest migration came from Gauteng, where 1%, or 64,706 residents, made the move to the north. That is even more than the 50,436 people who indicated they had moved to Limpopo from other countries. In third place, as far as places migrating from is concerned, is Mpumalanga, from where Limpopo received 16,878 residents.

The province where residents are least likely to migrate from to Limpopo is the Northern Cape. Only 992 residents indicated during the 2022 census that they had previously lived in the Northern Cape.


Date:16 June 2024

By: Anton van Zyl

Anton van Zyl has been with the Zoutpansberger and Limpopo Mirror since 1990. He graduated from the Rand Afrikaans University (now University of Johannesburg) and obtained a BA Communications degree. He is a founder member of the Association of Independent Publishers.

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