Food Coalition

Inputs from HiHi-FAO Papua New Guinea to the corporate umbrella programme for COVID-19 respons

In Papua New Guinea, the health system is chronically under-funded and poorly administered. Similar challenges and structural impediments are found in non-health related front-line services, such as policing, welfare, community protections, and gender, family and sexual violence services.

COVID-19 pandemic is expected to have wide socio-economic impacts. Current challenges faced by Government in managing public finances and debt will be exacerbated by loss of revenue from falling commodity prices (oil and gas) and will represent an additional external shock to the economy, impacting jobs, incomes, and livelihoods for the county’s most vulnerable. Both Port Moresby and Lae estimated a 30% drop in sales generally. Due to travel restrictions, the hospitality and tourism industry continues to have limited business.

Lockdown measures impacted MSMEs severely, resulting in loss of income and employment. Food supply chains, especially supply of fresh produce, was disrupted due to restrictions on movements between provinces and closure of street sales and main produce and food markets, which are gradually reopening. Price hikes have been observed on basic food items. Many provinces have provided food relief to vulnerable communities, coupled with distribution of seeds and planting material to encourage local food production. In the Sepiks region, where FAO is implementing the EU funded agricultural value chain development program (STREIT) in line with the principles of HIHI, COVID-19 restrictions disrupted supply and sales of vanilla and cocoa. Trade of vanilla across borders have also been suspended. The impacts of COVID-19 have also been compounded by the incursion of ASF in the Highlands region (where pigs are considered as asset/currency) and FAW in the Border provinces.

Priority Areas of work: Other
SDG: 1. No Poverty, 2. Zero Hunger, 8. Decent Work and Economic Growth, 12. Responsible Consumption and Production, 14. Life Below Water
Level: Country
Country: Papua New Guinea
Budget: USD 350 000 to USD 500 000

Action Sheet:

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