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GIEWS - Global Information and Early Warning System

Countries requiring external assistance for food

Countries in crisis requiring external assistance for food are expected to lack the resources to deal with reported critical problems of food insecurity. The list below covers crises related to lack of food availability, widespread lack of access to food, or severe but localized problems. GIEWS updates this list four times a year.

September 2017
  (total: 37 countries)
Nature of Food Insecurity
Main Reasons
Changes from last report
Conflict, displacements and food supply constraints
  • The Internally Displaced Person (IDP) caseload continued to increase and as of end-July it was estimated at about 600 000. In addition, about 1.1 million people (30 percent of the total population) are estimated to be in need of urgent assistance for food (IPC Phase 3: “Crisis” and IPC Phase 4: “Emergency”).

Civil insecurity, economic downturn and localized crop production shortfalls
  • Disruptions to markets, farming activities and livelihoods, coupled with limited humanitarian assistance and declining food import capacity, continue to seriously affect food security conditions. The areas most affected by food insecurity are northeastern Kirundo, Muyinga Karuzi and Cankuzo provinces, where these factors are compounded by consecutive crop production shortfalls.
  • About 1.5 million people are estimated to be severely food insecure.
Population displacements and civil insecurity
  • Approximately 402 000 refugees, 104 000 IDPs, as well as an estimated 97 000 Chadian returnees, continue to add pressure on local food supplies, negatively affecting food security.
  • About 897 000 people are estimated to be in need of food assistance according to the latest “Cadre Harmonisé” analysis (June 2017).
Conflict and displacements in eastern provinces, as well as influx of refugees putting strain on host communities
  • As of July 2017, the IDP caseload was estimated at 3.8 million. About 7.7 million people are estimated to be in acute food insecurity and livelihood crisis (IPC Phase 3: “Crisis” and IPC Phase 4: “Emergency”). The country hosts 102 400 refugees from the Central African Republic, 81 000 from South Sudan and 40 000 from Burundi.
Impact of consecutive unfavourable rainy seasons on pastoral livelihoods
  • About 197 000 people are severely food insecure, down from the previous estimate, mainly concentrated in pastoral areas north of Obock city and in southeastern border areas, which were affected by consecutive unfavourable rainy seasons.
Economic constraints have increased the population’s vulnerability to food insecurity
Impact of drought on local livelihood systems
  • Drought-affected second season crops and pastures in south and southeastern areas.
  • Overall, an estimated 8.5 million people are food insecure.
Population displacements and civil insecurity
  • More than 1.3 million people are estimated to be in Phase 3: “Crisis” and above according to the last “Cadre Harmonisé” analysis.
  • As of end-July, approximately 56 000 Malian refugees are estimated to be living in the country.
  • Almost 121 000 people, mostly in the southeast Diffa Region, have been displaced due to fear of attacks.
Economic downturn, weakened currency, population displacements and severe civil insecurity in northern areas
  • About 8.9 million people are estimated to be facing acute food insecurity and require urgent life-saving response and livelihood protection, including about 50 000 people in CH Phase 5: “Famine” (i.e. IPC “Catastrophe”), according to the latest “Cadre Harmonisé” analysis.
  • Despite the above-average cereal harvest gathered in 2016, the weak currency, coupled with persisting civil conflict in northern states has continued to disrupt market activities and keep food prices at high levels.
  • Approximately 1.9 million people have been internally displaced in the northeastern region of the country.
Conflict, civil insecurity and severe economic downturn
  • Although famine conditions have been phased out following sustained humanitarian assistance, the number of severely food insecure people has reached record high of 6 million, due to persisting insecurity, trade disruptions and high food prices.
Refugees putting strain on host communities
  • Over 33 500 Malian refugees are estimated to be living in the country.
  • About 257 000 people are estimated to be in need of food assistance according to the last “Cadre Harmonisé” analysis, despite the bumper 2016 cereal harvest.
Influx of refugees putting strain on host communities and displacements
  • The number of refugees from the Central African Republic was estimated, in June 2017, at 276 000. Insecurity along the borders with Nigeria also led to the internal displacement of 228 000 individuals.
Influx of refugees straining the already limited resources of host communities
  • As of end-July 2017, about 31 000 refugees from the Central African Republic are sheltering in the country.
Localized production shortfalls
  • About 286 000 people are estimated to be in need of food assistance according to the last “Cadre Harmonisé” analysis.
Crop production and livestock affected by consecutive unfavourable rainy seasons
  • About 2.6 million people are severely food insecure, mainly located in eastern, southeastern and coastal areas, following the negative impact of poor 2016 “short-rains” and below-average 2017 “long-rains” on agricultural production and pastoral livelihoods.
Localized production shortfalls
  • The number of food insecure is estimated to have fallen sharply by 68 percent to 224 664 people in 2017/18, mainly reflecting an improved national cereal output and lower food prices. However, conditions are expected to be stressed in late 2017 in southwestern areas, where dry spells adversely affected production, as households exhaust stocks and increase coping mechanisms.
Localized production shortfalls and influx of refugees
  • The country is hosting approximately 12 400 refugees as of end-July 2017, most of them from Côte d’Ivoire.
  • About 15 000 people are estimated to be in need of food assistance according to the latest “Cadre Harmonisé” analysis.
Civil insecurity
  • The number of people in need of food assistance is estimated at 0.4 million, with refugees, asylum seekers and internally‑displaced among the most vulnerable.
  • Food shortages are reported mostly in the south and east where basic food items are in short supply. Access to subsidized food among the affected population is limited.
Dry spells in main rice-producing regions and impact of cyclones
  • Rice production is estimated to have decreased to a well below-average level in 2017 due to dryness and the impact of cyclones, negatively impacting food availability.
  • Improved weather conditions in the previously drought-affected southern regions are estimated to have resulted in a small upturn in the agricultural output, easing food security conditions, which still remain stressed due to consecutive years of poor harvests.
Localized impact of weather shocks
  • The number of food insecure decreased steeply to 0.86 million people, from 6.7 million in the previous year, reflecting an overall improved agricultural output in 2017. However, increased food assistance will be required in late 2017 and early 2018 for those households affected by localized weather shocks.
Population displacements and civil insecurity in northern areas
  • An estimated 55 000 people have been internally displaced in the country mostly residing in Timbuktu, the most affected region by civil insecurity.
  • About 601 000 people, located mostly in Timbuktu, Mopti and Bamako regions, are estimated to be in Phase 3: “Crisis” and above, according to the last “Cadre Harmonisé” analysis.
Refugee caseload continues to put additional pressure on local food supplies
  • As of end-June 2017, about 52 000 Malian refugees remain in southeastern Mauritania in the Mbeera camp.
  • Over 281 000 people are estimated to be in Phase 3: “Crisis” and above, according to the last “Cadre Harmonisé” analysis.
Localized impact of floods and dry spells
  • An estimated 313 481 people are food insecure and require humanitarian assistance in 2017/18, down significantly from the year before reflecting the overall improved national agricultural output.
  • Households facing stressed food security conditions are concentrated in the central provinces of Manica and Sofala, and the northern province of Nampula, mainly on account of weather shocks that adversely affected production.
Floods and localized production shortfalls
  • About 92 000 people are estimated to be in need of food assistance, according to the latest “Cadre Harmonisé” analysis.
  • Over 500 people died and thousands were displaced in mid-August following heavy rains and a massive landslide in and around the capital, Freetown.
Conflict, civil insecurity and widespread drought conditions
  • About 3.1 million people are estimated to be in need of emergency assistance, mainly IDPs and drought-affected agro-pastoral communities across the country.
Conflict and civil insecurity
  • An estimated 3.4 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance, mainly IDPs and host communities in conflict‑affected areas.
Localized dry spells in southeastern parts
  • Dry spells in southern Lubombo Plateau dampened agricultural production in these areas, stressing food security conditions.
  • An estimated 159 080 people require food assistance, mostly concentrated in Lumombo Province. This figure is down 75 percent on an annual basis, reflecting a larger cereal harvest in 2017.
Below-average crop production
  • About 1.6 million people are estimated to be severely food insecure following two consecutive seasons of reduced agricultural outputs.
  • About 1 million refugees from South Sudan are hosted in camps in the northwestern parts of the country and depend on humanitarian assistance.
Food access constraints
  • An estimated 1.05 million rural people are expected to be food insecure during the peak of the lean season between January and March 2018, down 74 percent compared to the estimate for the same period in 2017 on account of significant improvements in the 2017 cereal production.
  • The highest prevalence of food insecurity is concentrated in southern and western regions. Households in these areas are expected to exhaust their stocks by the end of the year and will consequently adopt an increasing number of coping mechanisms to meet their food needs.
Civil conflict
  • About 6.9 people million are food insecure in terms of current consumption and 5.6 million would likely be worse-off without the food assistance provided. An additional 3.1 million people are at risk of food insecurity.
  • Although some international food assistance is being provided, Syrian refugees are also putting a strain on host communities in neighbouring countries.
Low agricultural output and economic downturn
  • Poor rains between April and July, coupled with low supplies of irrigation water, sharply reduced the 2017 early season crops and negatively impacted the 2017 main season crops, currently being harvested.
  • With a reduced cereal production in 2017, most households are anticipated to continue to experience borderline or poor food consumption rates.
Conflict, poverty and high food and fuel prices
  • According to the latest IPC (March 2017), 17 million people are food insecure and require urgent humanitarian assistance, with an increase of 3 million from the last IPC analysis of June 2016.
Continuing conflict and population displacement
  • Almost 1.6 million people are severely food insecure and 9.7 million moderately food insecure.
  • Over 630 000 people were displaced by the conflict in 2016, mostly in the hard‑to-access areas.
  • Since 1 January 2017, almost 84 000 Afghans returned from Pakistan and 230 000 from Iran (Islamic Republic of), adding to 700 000 undocumented Afghans who returned to the country in 2016.
Civil conflict
  • In the first half of 2017, some 922 000 people were internally displaced, mostly due to the operations in Mosul, in addition to the 3 million people already displaced by November 2016.
  • About 2.4 million people are estimated to be food insecure, of which 1.5 million severely food insecure.
Impact of floods for the third consecutive year in 2017, and conflict in parts of Kachin, Shan and resurgence of violence in Rakhine
  • Three years of flooding negatively impacted on the food security conditions of a large number of people.
  • Since the resurgence of violence in August 2017 in the Rakhine State, an estimated 370 000 people have sought refuge in Bangladesh.
  • According to OCHA, as of August, 525 000 people are estimated to be in need of food assistance, mostly in Kachin, Shan, Rakhine states and displaced people in southeastern Bangladesh.
Population displacement and localized cereal production shortfalls
  • For 2017, OCHA estimates 3.2 million people to be in need of humanitarian aid. As of September, approximately 43 000 families remain displaced in northern Pakistan due to recurrent insecurity.
  • In Tharparkar District and the surrounding areas of Sindh Province, the drought-affected cereal production and the loss of livestock for the third consecutive year have aggravated the food insecurity and caused acute malnutrition.
Recurrent droughts and hurricane damage
  • As a result of the reduced availability and access to food in the affected areas due to recurring droughts in 2014 and 2016, coupled with the effects of Hurricane Matthew in 2016, an estimated 1.5 million people are food insecure, of which 1.3 million will be assisted in 2017. The recent impact of Hurricane Irma is expected to further weigh negatively on food security conditions.