Zimbabwe worst hit by food inflation – World Bank

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By Thandiwe Garusa


THE latest World Bank (WB) food security report said Zimbabwe topped the ten countries most affected by domestic food price inflation, a development that has exacerbated household food insecurity.

The 10 countries most affected by food inflation are respectively Zimbabwe, Lebanon, Venezuela, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Iran, Argentina, Moldova, Ethiopia and Rwanda.

Zimbabwe tops the list with food inflation of 353% on an annual basis, followed by Lebanon with 240% while Venezuela was ranked third with 131%.

The surveys were based on data collected between May and August 2022, for which the food component of the consumer price index (CPI) and overall CPI data were available, the Washington-based lender said.

According to the World Bank, food insecurity is expected to increase in the coming months.

“Countries in Eastern and Southern Africa continue to experience acute food insecurity which is expected to increase further in the coming months. Food insecurity is particularly severe in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Ethiopia, where up to 10 million and 15 million people are at risk of acute food insecurity, respectively.

“There is also a high risk of food insecurity in other countries, including up to 7.5 million each in Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan, with the risk of famine in the latter two; 5 million in Zimbabwe; 2.5 million each in Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique and Uganda; and up to 1 million in Burundi,” the report read.

Meanwhile, the Zimbabwean government has appealed for food aid from humanitarian organizations as four million of the country’s rural population will be food insecure between January and March 2023.

This follows a decline in maize production due to poor rainfall distribution during the 2020/2021 crop year.

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