Skip to main content

General household income decrease as a result of COVID-19 disruptions

  • Key Message Update
  • Democratic Republic of Congo
  • May 2020
General household income decrease as a result of COVID-19 disruptions

Download the Report

  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • The number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase in the DRC, with 2546 confirmed cases as of May 26, 2020 throughout the country. Currently, seven provinces out of twenty-six are affected, with a higher number of cases in Kinshasa city (2293), Central Kongo (176) and North Kivu (35). Given the poor testing availability, there is concern that the disease may continue to spread. As a result, many people are resorting to increasingly severe strategies to earn money to feed their families. Affected areas currently in Stressed (IPC Phase 2) and will likely move to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) if restrictions continue.

    • The government's tightening of restrictive measures related to COVID-19, such as total containment of certain cities, reduction of traffic capacity, border closures, and absence of flights, among others, has had negative effects on the country's economic situation. This has resulted in an estimated currency depreciation of 4.8 percent in the official market and about 7.8 percent in the parallel market. Since the spikes in commodity prices in mid-March due to speculation related to COVID-19 in some regularly monitored markets, there has been a stable or even declining trend in the last two weeks of May. The price performance experienced following the suspension by local authorities of value added tax (VAT) on both imports and local sales has helped to increase the purchasing power of the population.

    • Since April 2020, the territory of Uvira, Sud Kivu Province has experienced torrential rainfall that has caused enormous damage to people and their homes following the flooding of local rivers and of Lake Tanganyika. According to local authorities' estimates, about 100,000 people are directly affected by the floods and 78,000 people are reportedly housed in 38 displacement sites and 5,000 host households. This disaster could reduce agricultural participation for the next agricultural season and reduce food access opportunities for affected households in the short and medium term. For the current situation, these households are in Crisis (IPC Phase 3).

    • With the new territorial conflict declared between Zambia and the DRC since the end of March 2020, in the villages of Moliri and Kibanga, in Moba territory, in the province of Tanganyika, one could expect a deterioration of the humanitarian situation in this province, already weakened and bruised by inter-community conflicts. Prospects for agricultural recovery in the area could be ruined if the ongoing mediation process is delayed.

    • The current month of May is marked by the start of the green harvests of the main food crops (maize, groundnuts and beans) for season B in north-eastern and central-eastern DRC. However, anomalies in rainfall during the season and population displacements in insecure areas during the same period have reduced the current harvest, which is estimated to be below average. An early lean season can be expected due to this poor performance. The populations in the flooded areas will be in Crisis (IPC Phase 3), particularly in the littoral areas of Lake Tanganyika, in the territories of Uvira and Fizi of Sud Kivu Province.

    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.

    Get the latest food security updates in your inbox Sign up for emails

    The information provided on this Website is not official U.S. Government information and does not represent the views or positions of the U.S. Agency for International Development or the U.S. Government.

    Jump back to top