FAO/GIEWS: Africa Report 10/96

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SWAZILAND




BACKGROUND INFORMATION

Area: 17 000 sq.km
Climate: Highland rainy climate. One rainy season (October-April); cool temperatures in May- September
Population: 0.83 million (1995 estimate); G.N.P. per caput: U.S.$ 1 160 (1994)
Specific characteristics of the country: Low-income food-deficit country; land-locked country
Logistics: Good road network; imports through Mozambique or South Africa
Major foodcrops: Maize
Marketing year: May/April; Lean season: February-April
Share of cereals in total calorie intake: 55 percent



CURRENT SITUATION

Harvesting of the 1995/96 coarse grain crop is over and total cereal production is estimated at 110 000 tons, 40 percent above 1994/95. The maize harvest is estimated at 108 000 tons, 42 percent higher than output in the previous year. This is slightly lower than initial estimates, as inadequate on-farm storage and drying facilities led to losses of part of the maize harvest. The substantial increase in output is largely due to favourable rainfall experienced in most parts of the country during the growing season, which resulted in a substantial increase in the area planted.

The food supply situation is expected to improve considerably during the 1996/97 marketing year. Total maize supply is expected to cover most of the domestic requirements and cereal imports are estimated at 58 000 tons. This is much lower than the previous year and could be largely met through commercial channels. Under the Drought Relief Programme, food aid pledges carried over from last year amount to 6 000 tons so far, all of which have now been delivered.



CEREAL SUPPLY/DEMAND BALANCE FOR THE 1996/97 MARKETING YEAR (in thousand tons)

Wheat Rice Coarse grains Total
Normal production 1 2 116 119
Normal imports (incl. re-exports) 25 2 20 47
of which: Structural food aid 8 - 1 9
1996 Production - 1 109 110
1996/97 Utilization 37 8 129 174
Food use 37 8 107 152
Non-food use - - 20 20
Cross border exports - - 2 2
1996/97 Import Requirement 37 7 20 64
Anticipated commercial imports 37 7 14 58
Food aid needs - - 6 6
of which: Emergency - - - -
Current Aid Position



Food aid pledges - - 6 6
of which: Delivered - - 6 6
Estimated per caput consumption (kg/year) 42 9 122 173
Indexes



1996 production as % of normal: 92
1996/97 import requirement as % of normal: 136
1996/97 food aid requirement as % of normal (including refugee needs): 67

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