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

In July, new intercommunal attacks have been reported in Jonglei, Lakes, and Warrap. The attacks are driven by conflict over resources and cattle, as well as retaliation for earlier attacks.

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

Reduced remittances from abroad and some disruptions to domestic business activity are constraining access to income, with food prices expected to continue increasing in the coming months due to severe currency shortages.

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

In North Central and North West Zones between July 13 and 19, conflict between ethnic groups and insecurity caused by criminal groups and bandits affected over 1,700 people.        

Other Areas of Concern

Reason for Concern

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

Current Observations

The Ebola outbreak in Equateur Province continues to expand, while the country continues to fight COVID-19 and a measles outbreak.

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

Following the first foreign exchange auction where the currency lost more than half its value, diesel and petrol prices increased by about 150 percent.

Reason for Concern

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

Current Observations

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of violent incidents in the region nearly doubled between the last quarter of 2019 and the first quarter of 2020.

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

COVID-19 movement restrictions continue to limit poor households’ income from labor activities, especially in Ethiopia. However, informal labor migration is gradually rising within the Amhara region, which is an area of high concern.

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.

In July, new intercommunal attacks have been reported in Jonglei, Lakes, and Warrap. The attacks are driven by conflict over resources and cattle, as well as retaliation for earlier attacks.

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.

Reduced remittances from abroad and some disruptions to domestic business activity are constraining access to income, with food prices expected to continue increasing in the coming months due to severe currency shortages.

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.

In North Central and North West Zones between July 13 and 19, conflict between ethnic groups and insecurity caused by criminal groups and bandits affected over 1,700 people.        

Other Areas of Concern

Country or Region Reason for Concern Observations
DRC

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

The Ebola outbreak in Equateur Province continues to expand, while the country continues to fight COVID-19 and a measles outbreak.

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.

Following the first foreign exchange auction where the currency lost more than half its value, diesel and petrol prices increased by about 150 percent.

Bordering areas of Burkina Faso, Niger, and Mali

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

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of violent incidents in the region nearly doubled between the last quarter of 2019 and the first quarter of 2020.

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. 

COVID-19 movement restrictions continue to limit poor households’ income from labor activities, especially in Ethiopia. However, informal labor migration is gradually rising within the Amhara region, which is an area of high concern.

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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