FAO/GIEWS: Africa Report 05/97

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BURUNDI

Area: 26 000 sq.km

Climate:

Highland rainy climate with moderate temperature (200C); two rainy seasons (Feb.- May and Sept.-Nov.)

Population:

6.58 million (1996 estimate); G.N.P. per caput: U.S.$ 160 (1995)

Specific characteristics of the country:

Low-income food-deficit country; land-locked country

Logistics:

Ports: Mombasa (Kenya) and Dar es Salaam (Tanzania); rail and road connections inadequate

Major foodcrops:

Pulses, plantains, roots, tubers, maize and sorghum

Marketing year:

January/December; Lean season: November-December

Share of cereals in total calorie intake:

34 percent



CURRENT SITUATION

The situation remains extremely volatile with fighting and violent incidents reported from southern parts, mainly in the Makamba province. However, security conditions have improved in the provinces of Cibitoke, Bubanza and Karuzi, previously affected by persistent conflict. Although, agricultural production continues to be negatively affected by insecurity in the areas most affected by the conflict, overall prospects for the 1997 B season, to be harvested from June, are better than in the previous season. This reflects generally adequate rains so far, an increase in the area planted in response to improved security conditions, and improved availability of agriculture inputs following an exemption to the embargo by neighbouring countries granted by the Regional Sanctions Co-ordination Committee(RSCC). FAO is currently distributing 200 tons of bean seed, hoes and vegetable seed to the most vulnerable population. Out of 4 000 tons of fertilizers to cover the needs for 1997 some 2 200 tons have entered the country and are currently being distributed. Crops are reported in generally good conditions. Providing weather conditions remain satisfactory during the growing season and assuming that security will not deteriorate, the output is forecast to recover from the reduced levels of the past three seasons.

An FAO/WFP Crop and Food Supply Assessment Mission which visited the country in January/February found that the 1997 first season crop (harvested in January) was affected by poor security, large movements of the population, an economic embargo and adverse weather in some parts. The aggregate food production of the 1997 first season crop was estimated at 1.2 million tons, 7 percent lower than in 1996 and 18 percent below the pre-crisis average for 1988-1993. Pulses and to a lesser extent cereals were the crops most affected. The food supply situation remains tight for most products, particularly beans. As a result of a succession of reduced harvest and the economic embargo since late July 1996, prices of food increased by more than 40-50 percent compared to the beginning of 1996. The price of beans more than doubled. Following the lift of embargo on 16 April 1997, food prices are expected to decline in the coming months but the situation of large numbers of vulnerable population will remain difficult. A recent UN Inter-Agency Mission evaluated the vulnerable population at some 796 000 persons, including 284 000 displaced, 28 000 dispersed, 187 000 persons in regroupment camps, 78 000 returnees and some 219 000 affected by a poor harvest in the previous 1997 A crop season. The nutritional and health situation of the people in the regroupment camps gives cause for concern. The Government has requested international humanitarian assistance for the regrouped population.

CEREAL SUPPLY/DEMAND BALANCE FOR THE 1997 MARKETING YEAR (in thousand tons)


Wheat

Rice

Coarse grains

Total

Normal Production (rice in paddy terms)

7

41

253

301

Normal Imports

20

2

7

29

of which: Structural food aid

-

-

-

-

1997 Domestic Availability

9

27

220

256

1996 Production (rice in paddy terms)

9

41

220

270

1996 Production (rice in milled terms)

9

27

220

256

Possible stock drawdown

-

-

-

-

1997 Utilization

29

29

252

310

Food Use

28

28

225

281

of which: local purchase requirement

-

-

-

-

Non-food use

1

1

27

29

Exports or Re-exports

-

-

-

-

Possible stock build up

-

-

-

-

1997 Import Requirement

20

2

32

54

Anticipated commercial imports

16

-

15

31

Food aid needs

4

2

17

23

Current Aid Position





Food aid pledges

2

-

7

9

of which: Delivered

-

-

-

-

Estimated Per Caput Consumption (kg/Year)

4

4

34

42

Indexes





1996 production as % of normal:




90

1997 import requirement as % of normal:




186

1997 food aid requirement as % of normal:






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