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Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes emerging in drought affected areas

  • Key Message Update
  • Mozambique
  • March 2020
Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes emerging in drought affected areas

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • Projected outcomes in February remain unchanged, with many areas throughout the country facing Stressed (IPC Phase 2) outcomes. Humanitarian food assistance is still preventing more severe outcomes in areas affected by last year’s cyclones, resulting in Stressed! (IPC Phase 2!) food insecurity. Crisis (IPC Phase 3) is expected to expand in parts of Cabo Delgado by April due to conflict and is expected to emerge in drought affected areas in the southern regions where the 2019/20 main season harvest will be well below average.

    • Humanitarian food assistance, led by the Food Security Cluster (FSC), is expected to end in March across most cyclone affected areas. From February to March there was a general reduction in the number of beneficiaries and food rations due to insufficient resources. However, needs are anticipated to remain high as a result of additional shocks during the 2019/2020 season, including drought, conflict and flooding. Crisis (IPC Phase 3) is expected to emerge in the absence of humanitarian assistance in the southern regions most affected by drought. In areas affected by last year’s cyclones, the expected average harvest will contribute to further recovery and keep households in Stressed (IPC Phase 2).

    • March has been characterized by significantly below average cumulative rainfall across the entire country, particularly in the central and southern region. In the central region, crops have not been as impacted due to good soil moisture conditions from earlier in the season. In the southern region, most crops have failed due to a third consecutive drought season. Based on satellite estimates by the Water Requirements Satisfaction Index (WRSI), crop production is anticipated to be above the five-year average in the northern region, close to the five-year average in the central region and below the five-year average in the southern region. The overall national level crop production for the 2019/20 season is expected to be close to the 5-year average.

    • Prices reached their seasonal peak in February and are expected to begin to decrease with the start of the harvest in April. Above average maize grain prices persist due to below average market supply from last season. Prices of maize grain were 26 to 85 percent higher than 2019 and 20 to 100 percent above the five-year average. Abnormally high prices of maize grain are constraining the purchasing power of the most vulnerable households, particularly those affected by last year´s shocks and are still heavily relying on market purchases for food.

    • As of March 30, 2020, Mozambique has 8 confirmed cases of Covid-19. Currently, all borders with South Africa are closed except for the transport of goods and cargo. Schools in Mozambique have been closed and gatherings of more than 50 people have been banned. There have not been notable changes to poor households’ access to food and income to date; while labor opportunities in South Africa are a key source of income for many, this is currently a time of seasonally low migration. As the situation develops, FEWS NET will continue to monitor the impacts of COVID-19 on household food security, particularly with a view to new measures that will come into force from April 1 with the government’s declaration of the State of Emergency.

    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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