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Minimal outcomes persist as access increased from ongoing Season C harvest

  • Key Message Update
  • Rwanda
  • September 2023
Minimal outcomes persist as access increased from ongoing Season C harvest

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • Minimal (IPC Phase 1) outcomes are expected to be sustained across the country, driven by the availability of household food stocks from the ongoing Season C harvest, income from sales of crops or animals, and enhanced income access from employment opportunities. Additionally, improved cross-border trade and labor migration are further boosting income access and the supply of food and non-food items to the market, supporting price stabilizations. However, Stressed! (IPC Phase 2!) outcomes are expected to persist among refugees, with humanitarian assistance preventing worse outcomes. Further, the population facing Stressed outcomes is expected to increase during the peak of the October to December lean season as households deplete their own stocks and turn to food purchases amid high food prices. 
    • Minimal! (IPC Phase 1!) outcomes are likely to be sustained among the flood-affected population in Western Province, as government and partners are expected to maintain food and non-food support up to December. As households deplete food stocks and become reliant on market purchases amid rising food prices, the number of rural households facing Stressed (IPC Phase 2) outcomes is likely to increase but remain below 20 percent of the population. According to the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda (NISR), August's rural food inflation rate increased marginally by 3 percent compared to July, and the annual rural food inflation rate rose by about 35 percent. With the projected above-average rainfall from October to December, risks of flash floods and landslides remain high in some lowland and highland areas, respectively.
    • In Kigali City, Minimal (IPC Phase 1) outcomes will likely be sustained until early next year, driven by enhanced household food access with increased income-earning opportunities from increased economic activities. In addition, food prices are expected to stabilize with increased market supplies from rural areas and enhanced cross-border trade with Uganda, Tanzania, and Burundi. However, atypically high food prices are likely to continue limiting food access among urban poor households. According to the August 2023 NISR report, monthly food inflation rates in urban areas increased slightly by 2 percent, but the annual inflation rate was approximately 25 percent. Food prices are expected to continue rising during the October to December lean season, constraining food access among poor households and likely increasing the population experiencing Stressed (IPC Phase 2), although it will likely remain below 20 percent. 
    • The estimated 134,500 refugees and asylees in Rwanda are expected to face Stressed! (IPC Phase 2!) outcomes, with humanitarian assistance covering about half of their monthly food needs preventing worse outcomes. Most refugees have minimal supplemental sources of food and income, making them dependent on humanitarian assistance for food needs. However, funding shortfalls persist, forcing humanitarian assistance organizations to reduce food rations. In addition, the purchasing value of cash transfers continues to be eroded by high food prices, which are expected to worsen during the upcoming lean season. Meanwhile, the conflict at the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo has somewhat calmed down, but Congolese refugees continue to arrive in Rwanda, with an estimated 1,500 new arrivals recorded in August, straining limited humanitarian assistance resources.

    Recommended Citation: FEWS NET. Rwanda Key Message update, September 2023. Minimal outcomes persist as access increased from the ongoing Season C harvest, 2023.

    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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