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Conflict continues to lead to high levels of displacement and limits livelihoods opportunities

  • Key Message Update
  • Ethiopia
  • March 2019
Conflict continues to lead to high levels of displacement and limits livelihoods opportunities

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • Conflict continues to drive displacement, leading to food insecure IDP populations. In Gedeo Zone of SNNPR, where households were displaced from Guji zone of Oromia beginning June 2018, IDPs will miss another agricultural season in the current Belg. Ongoing food assistance from the Ethiopian government and humanitarian actors will need to continue to meet their needs. Similar situations exist in west and east Wellega zones of Oromia, particularly those displaced from Kamashi zone of Gumuze, and additional humanitarian assistance is still required.

    • The Ethiopian Food Security Reserve Administration has publicly announced that the food reserve is depleting and is critically low due to the emerging needs and responses in the country. The reserve, since last week, has issued a tender to procure 600,000 mt of grain from the international market.  

    • Light and erratic Belg rain fall started on time in the second dekad of February 2019 in parts of southern Tigray and North Wello zone of Amhara, region. However, they started one to two weeks late and have been below average in SNNPR, and East and West Hararghe of zones of Oromia. There was no significant rainfall in most Belg-benefiting woredas of Arsi, Bale and North Shewa zones of Oromia. Overall, the amount and distribution of Belg rains have been below average, leading to late and below average land preparation and planting of short-maturing Belg and long cycle Meher Crops. By mid-March in SNNP and Amhara Regions only 6 and 46 percent of Belg season planting was completed, respectively.

    • Concerns are growing over the March to May 2019 Gu/Gana/Sugum rains in southern, southeastern and eastern pastoral areas that have either not started or have been erratically distributed, leading to largely below-average seasonal totals so far.  This is leading to limited regeneration of pastureland and surface water. Gu rain in south and southeastern Somali has not yet started and, the area is experiencing unusually hothotter than normal weather. In Borena and Guji zones of Oromia, Gana rain started in the second dekad of February and continued to the first dekad of March. Most parts of southern and western Afar region and Fafan zone of zone of Somali region relying on Sugum rain received only two to three days of light showers.

    • Prices of staple crops increased significantly following the combination of the following factors: the early withdrawal of the 2018 Meher rains in northeastern Amhara and Tigray, trade flow restrictions from surplus producing to deficit areas due to insecurity, continued inflation of the Ethiopian Birr, and the current poor performance of the 2019 Belg season. This has been particularly detrimental to the purchasing power of poor and very poor households in eastern deficit producing areas. As a result, most of these households will remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) between March and September 2019.

    This Key Message Update provides a high-level analysis of current acute food insecurity conditions and any changes to FEWS NET's latest projection of acute food insecurity outcomes in the specified geography. Learn more here.

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