FAO/GIEWS: Africa Report 02/97

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KENYA

Area:

569 000 sq.km

Climate:

North-east is semi-arid to arid; mountainous central and south-western areas have two

rainy seasons (March-May and November-December)


Population:

29.21 million (1996 estimate), GNP per caput U.S.$ 270 (1993)

Specific characteristics of the country:

Low-income food-deficit country; regular importer and occasional exporter of grain.

Logistics:

Good port (Mombasa) and extensive rail and road network. Gateway to Burundi,

Rwanda and Uganda


Major foodcrops:

Maize, wheat, pulses, roots and tubers

Marketing year:

October/September

Lean season:

June-July

Share of cereals in total calorie intake:

56 percent



CURRENT SITUATION

Harvest of the secondary short rains season crops is well advanced. The outlook is poor has seriously due to insufficient rainfall during the growing season. The rains, which normally start in mid-October came late, became sporadic and the situation turned into one of drought in December. In most parts of North Eastern, Eastern and Coast Provinces, and in the low-altitude areas of Central Province, widespread crop failures and deteriorating pasture and rangeland conditions are reported and water scarcity has become a serious problem for both livestock and humans. Significant losses of livestock have also been reported. For these same areas, the failure of the 1996/97 short rains follows two consecutive failures of the long rains (March-May), thus worsening an already tight food supply situation. The Government estimates that some two million people are currently affected by the drought and that the number may reach three million if the situation persists. It has appealed to the international community for emergency food assistance for this section of the population.

For the country as a whole, an FAO/WFP Crop and Food Supply Assessment Mission, which visited Kenya in October/November 1996, estimated that the maize output of the main long rains season was reduced due to a combination of economic and weather factors. As a result of the failure of the second season, the 1996/97 national maize production has been revised downwards to 2.16 million tons, a decrease of 20 percent from last year.

For the 1996/97 marketing year, a revised cereal import requirement of 1.2 million tons is now projected. This is almost double the average for the past five years. It is anticipated that 1 million tons of food grains would be commercially imported, leaving a deficit of 200 000 tons. The Strategic Grain Reserve (SGR) is at a minimum level while the ability of the country to meet this shortfall through additional imports is limited due to foreign exchange constraints. Substantial external assistance is therefore needed. Total cereal food aid pledges as of late January 1997 amounted to 43 000 tons (including local purchases). Donors are urged to make additional pledges and expedite their delivery as a matter of urgency to avoid a serious food problem developing in the country.

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

Wheat

Rice

Coarse grains

Total

Normal Production (rice in paddy terms)

241

49

2 587

2 877

Normal Imports

311

57

312

680

of which: Structural food aid

74

-

-

74

1996/97 Domestic Availability

350

39

2 493

2 882

1996 Production (rice in paddy terms)

350

58

2 393

2 801

1996 Production (rice in milled terms)

350

39

2 393

2 782

Possible stock drawdown

-

-

100

100

1996/97 Utilization

709

159

3 233

4 101

Food Use

677

157

2 820

3 654

of which: local purchase requirement

-

-

6

6

Non-food use

32

2

413

447

Exports or Re-exports

-

-

-

-

Possible stock build up

-

-

-

-

1996/97 Import Requirement

359

120

740

1 219

Anticipated commercial imports

309

120

590

1 019

Food aid needs

50

-

150

200

Current Aid Position





Food aid pledges

32

-

5

37

of which: Delivered

5

-

-

5

Donor-financed local purchases

-

-

6

6

Estimated Per Caput Consumption (kg/Year)

23

5

97

125

Indexes





1996 production as % of normal:




97

1996/97 import requirement as % of normal:




179

1996/97 food aid requirement as % of normal:




270


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