FEWS NET is monitoring the multiple impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on acute food insecurity in the countries where we operate and will incorporate this analysis into our ongoing reporting.


Areas of Highest Concern

Reason for Concern

Conflict events have declined, but periodically affect trade, humanitarian access, and livelihoods. The loss of livelihood assets during the conflict has reduced household food and income sources and eroded coping capacity. Very poor macroeconomic conditions constrain household market access.

Current Observations

Deficit 2020 crop production and the sharp depreciation of the SSP are compounding the impact of floods, conflict, and the long-term macroeconomic crisis. 

Reason for Concern

Protracted conflict has severely disrupted livelihoods and reduced income-earning. Food prices remain elevated and food access is inadequate for many households. Currently, over 17 million people are in need of humanitarian food assistance.

Current Observations

Low levels of government revenue and severe foreign currency shortages remain of high concern. Depreciation of the currency and fuel shortages continue to drive food price increases in some areas. 

Reason for Concern

Boko Haram attacks continue in the northeast, and insecurity in the northwest and central states are causing displacement of households and limiting access to livelihoods. Over 2.5 million people are currently internally displaced in these regions.

Current Observations

As of early October, flooding in Jigawa, Kebbi, Kwara, Sokoto, and Zamfara States displaced over 22,000 people according to the government. The government is providing assistance and agriculture inputs to help with recovery.

Other Areas of Concern

Reason for Concern

Ongoing conflicts in North Kivu, South Kivu, Ituri, and Tanganyika Provinces have caused continuing displacement and affected households’ abilities to access typical livelihood activities.

Current Observations

Four civilians were killed in Beni territory in mid-October in two separate attacks, after more than one calmer month. 

Reason for Concern

Due to very poor macroeconomic conditions and the expected two consecutive poor seasons, atypically high humanitarian assistance needs are expected to continue throughout 2020.

Current Observations

The annual inflation rate in Zimbabwe, which started to decline in August, continues to do so, with the October inflation rate around 471 percent; however, inflation remains among the highest globally. 

Reason for Concern

The deteriorating security situation is disrupting household access to livelihoods and markets. More than 3,000,000 people are displaced throughout the region.

Current Observations

Between July and October 2020, the number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Menaka, Mali has increased by over 50 percent due to insecurity along the Mali-Niger border.

Reason for Concern

The 2019 deyr/short rains season was exceptionally above average, resulting in widespread river and flash floods. In some areas, this has slowed recovery from the previous 2018/19 and 2016/17 droughts. 

Current Observations

At the start of the October to December 2020 deyr/short rains season, rainfall is below-average in parts of southern Somalia, eastern Kenya, and southeastern Ethiopia.  

Areas of Highest Concern

Country or Region Reason for Concern Observations
South Sudan

Conflict events have declined, but periodically affect trade, humanitarian access, and livelihoods. The loss of livelihood assets during the conflict has reduced household food and income sources and eroded coping capacity. Very poor macroeconomic conditions constrain household market access.

Deficit 2020 crop production and the sharp depreciation of the SSP are compounding the impact of floods, conflict, and the long-term macroeconomic crisis. 

Yemen

Protracted conflict has severely disrupted livelihoods and reduced income-earning. Food prices remain elevated and food access is inadequate for many households. Currently, over 17 million people are in need of humanitarian food assistance.

Low levels of government revenue and severe foreign currency shortages remain of high concern. Depreciation of the currency and fuel shortages continue to drive food price increases in some areas. 

Nigeria

Boko Haram attacks continue in the northeast, and insecurity in the northwest and central states are causing displacement of households and limiting access to livelihoods. Over 2.5 million people are currently internally displaced in these regions.

As of early October, flooding in Jigawa, Kebbi, Kwara, Sokoto, and Zamfara States displaced over 22,000 people according to the government. The government is providing assistance and agriculture inputs to help with recovery.

Other Areas of Concern

Country or Region Reason for Concern Observations
DRC

Ongoing conflicts in North Kivu, South Kivu, Ituri, and Tanganyika Provinces have caused continuing displacement and affected households’ abilities to access typical livelihood activities.

Four civilians were killed in Beni territory in mid-October in two separate attacks, after more than one calmer month. 

Zimbabwe

Due to very poor macroeconomic conditions and the expected two consecutive poor seasons, atypically high humanitarian assistance needs are expected to continue throughout 2020.

The annual inflation rate in Zimbabwe, which started to decline in August, continues to do so, with the October inflation rate around 471 percent; however, inflation remains among the highest globally. 

Bordering areas of Burkina Faso, Niger, and Mali

The deteriorating security situation is disrupting household access to livelihoods and markets. More than 3,000,000 people are displaced throughout the region.

Between July and October 2020, the number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Menaka, Mali has increased by over 50 percent due to insecurity along the Mali-Niger border.

Horn of Africa

The 2019 deyr/short rains season was exceptionally above average, resulting in widespread river and flash floods. In some areas, this has slowed recovery from the previous 2018/19 and 2016/17 droughts. 

At the start of the October to December 2020 deyr/short rains season, rainfall is below-average in parts of southern Somalia, eastern Kenya, and southeastern Ethiopia.  

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Peak needs 2018

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About FEWS NET

The Famine Early Warning Systems Network is a leading provider of early warning and analysis on food insecurity. Created by USAID in 1985 to help decision-makers plan for humanitarian crises, FEWS NET provides evidence-based analysis on approximately 30 countries. Implementing team members include NASA, NOAA, USDA, USGS, and CHC-UCSB, along with Chemonics International Inc. and Kimetrica.
Learn more About Us.

Link to United States Agency for International Development (USAID)Link to the United States Geological Survey's (USGS) FEWS NET Data PortalLink to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
Link to National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Earth ObservatoryLink to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Weather Service, Climage Prediction CenterLink to the Climate Hazards Center - UC Santa BarbaraLink to KimetricaLink to Chemonics