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Continued northern border post closures impact staple food prices in Rwanda

  • Key Message Update
  • Rwanda
  • April 2019
Continued northern border post closures impact staple food prices in Rwanda

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • Due to delayed 2019 Season A harvests, most Season B crops were planted late and were thus spared by the dry spell of early March, resulting in good development through April. Above-normal rainfall forecast through May is likely to support average to above-average 2019 Season B harvests in May/June and maintain Minimal (IPC Phase 1) food insecurity though September 2019.  However, some poor households may be Stressed (IPC Phase 2) due to increasing food prices until May/June.

    • The price of food staples has increased since March, in part due to the disruption of Ugandan imports following the closure of northern border posts in February. The FEWS NET East African Trade Bulletin reports that imports of Ugandan beans decreased by 52 percent from last quarter 2018 to first quarter 2019. Imports from Tanzania increased but did not fill that gap. Although food prices increased by only 6 percent from February to March 2019, according to the National Institute of Statistics, the prices of Ugandan maize flour and vegetable oil reportedly increased by 15 to 25 percent after border closures.

    • According to UNHCR, Rwanda hosts approximately 148,000 refugees, with 51 and 49 percent coming from the DRC and Burundi, respectively. That number has been stable over the last 12 months, although monthly arrivals from Burundi have increased from an average of 187 in the last quarter of 2018 to 278 in the first quarter of 2019. Due to adequate WFP funding of humanitarian assistance until August 2019 and gradual integration of refugees into national safety net systems, most refugees are expected to face no acute food insecurity (IPC Phase 1!), although some are likely Stressed (IPC Phase 2!).

    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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