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Ethiopia, one of the major recipients of international food aid over the last decade, will require smaller quantities of food aid imports in 1996. But still "there are an estimated 9 million people currently facing severe food shortages in eastern Africa, including some 7 million in the Horn of Africa."
Overall, the report estimates aggregate cereal production in the Horn in 1995/96 at five percent below the previous year's harvest. "Reduced crops in Eritrea, Somalia and Sudan more than offset the significant gain in production in Ethiopia. Production also declined in Kenya, but remained above average. Large numbers of vulnerable people and those affected by localized crop failures require continued food assistance throughout 1996.
Angola, Mozambique and Rwanda are gradually beginning to reap the dividends of peace and a recent peace agreement in Sierra Leone offers the hope of partial recovery of food production and marketing in 1996, the report said.
In southern Africa, the report says, "Initial indications are that the sub-region's output may be above average and well up on last year's drought-reduced level, on account of an increase in area planted and expected above-average yields." South Africa and Zimbabwe may even become self-sufficient in maize once again, possibly generating significant surpluses, according to the report.
In Monrovia, Liberia, the report warns, "The volatile security situation could undermine agricultural production in 1996 and hamper relief operations, which are generally coordinated from Monrovia."
In Burundi, the report says, continuing insecurity in some provinces and unfavourable weather conditions have reduced food production thus far in 1996 by 15 percent from normal levels.