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Continued imports needed through Red Sea ports to mitigate risk of Famine

  • Key Message Update
  • Yemen
  • January 2018
Continued imports needed through Red Sea ports to mitigate risk of Famine

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • Large populations in Yemen continue to face Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or Emergency (IPC Phase 4) acute food insecurity. As worst-affected households begin to exhaust their coping capacity, populations may begin to move into Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5) even in the absence of additional disruptions. In a worst-case scenario, significant declines in commercial imports below requirement levels and conflict that cuts populations off from trade and humanitarian assistance for an extended period could drive food security outcomes in line with Famine (IPC Phase 5). 

    • In mid-January, the Saudi-led coalition announced a 30-day extension to the re-opening of Al Hudaydah and Salif ports to commercial imports. The resumption of fuel imports, which had been halted between November 6 and December 20, has led to decreases in the prices of fuel and water and improvements in their availability on local markets. Sustained imports of essential goods such as food and fuel are critically needed to mitigate the risk of Famine (IPC Phase 5) in 2018. 

    • The Yemeni Riyal continues to depreciate rapidly against foreign currencies. Data collected by FEWS NET in Sana’a City suggests that the exchange rate declined from 415 YER/USD in early November to 500 YER/USD in the last week of January 2018, losing about 20 percent of its value. The Yemeni Riyal is now worth about 60 percent of its value compared to this time last year. In mid-January, the Government of Saudi Arabia announced an injection of $2 billion USD into the Central Bank based in Aden. The Yemeni Riyal initially gained in strength after the announcement, but further depreciation quickly resumed. 

    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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