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October 2022 Global Price Watch

  • Price Watch
  • Global
  • October 1, 2022
October 2022 Global Price Watch

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • In West Africa, staple food prices declined seasonally in September due to harvests. However, prices increased notably in conflict and flood-affected areas of the Sahel and Ghana. Overall, prices remained significantly higher than the five-year average across the region due to below-average stocks, strong demand, and persistent insecurity. In the Coastal countries, above-average prices were driven mainly by the strong export demand, a sharp rise in supply costs associated with high fuel and fertilizer prices, and depreciating currencies.

    • In East Africa, staple commodity prices increased seasonally in key markets in Burundi and Uganda as stocks declined. Prices were seasonably stable in most markets in Tanzania, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Sudan due to ongoing or imminent harvests. In South Sudan, price trends were mixed, declining in some markets partly supported by food assistance and increasing in others as stocks tightened. Staple food commodity prices across all markets in East Africa remained elevated for various reasons, including previous and projected below-average harvests, high demand, currency devaluation, high inflation, and transport costs.

    • In Southern Africa, maize prices increased seasonally across most markets in September as stock-to-use ratios declined through the lean season. Global commodity price volatility amplified high staple prices across the region, which remain well above the previous year and five-year averages. Inflation levels increased across the region, driven primarily by global commodity prices, exchange rate volatility, and supply chain disruptions. Several central banks took measures to curb high inflation by raising interest rates and cutting value-added taxes on consumption goods. Above-average exports within the region and to East Africa were driven by poor 2022 harvests and increased export parity prices. 

    • In Central America, markets operated normally and were well supplied. Local grain availability improved from the primera harvest, and the supply of imported goods was stable. Staple food prices were stable across most markets but remain above the previous year and five-year averages. In Haiti, the sociopolitical crisis and widespread violence disrupted market operations and food supply across the country. Local food prices increased due to transportation constraints and limited market functioning, especially in urban areas. Imported rice prices increased, despite appreciation of the local currency, due to insecurity around ports. 

    • In Central Asia, wheat prices were stable in Kazakhstan and Afghanistan compared to last month, while wheat flour prices increased in Pakistani markets. In Yemen, wheat prices in Sana'a city increased slightly and remained stable in Aden as the UN-brokered peace agreement held through the end of September.

    • International staple food markets were sufficiently supplied. Global staple commodity prices increased due to tighter stocks, lower production prospects, strong demand, and appreciation of the USD. Global fuel prices declined due to concerns about global economic growth, weaker demand, and a stronger USD while fertilizer prices were stable due to lower seasonal demand. However, prices remain above 2021 and the five-year average.

    Price Watch offers a monthly summary and outlook on global, regional and national trends of key commodity prices in FEWS NET countries. Analysis may touch on global issues, such as fuel prices or exchange rates, if they are likely to influence staple food prices in FEWS NET countries. The accompanying Price Watch Annex details price trends by country.

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