The City of uMhlathuze, the name of the whole municipal area is a largely rural municipality in the north-eastern part of KwaZulu-Natal. It is known for its harbour at Richards Bay, from which coal and other commodities are exported. The two main urban areas of uMhlathuze are Richards Bay, founded in the late 1960s, and the much older Empangeni. This chapter focuses largely on Richards Bay. UMhlathuze makes an excellent case study of three concerns for secondary cities in South Africa today: the positive and negative effects of national policies and political preferences on the city's economy, the conflicts between modernity and traditionalism in the urban rural links, and the challenges of globalisation. It starts with the history of uMhlathuze, which is essential for understanding its current development problems. The Zulu Kingdom's economy consisted of subsistence farming, hunting, cattle herding and bartering, but wealth accumulation happened mainly through conquest of other tribes.