Global Food Prices Rnflation Still Rising – World Bank

World Bank Announces Additional $1.5bn To Strengthen Fertilizer Production

In its most recent Food Security Update report, released on Tuesday, the World Bank stated that substantial inflation was observed in low-, middle-, and high-income nations based on the data available on food prices.

It said that, in 63.2% of low-income countries, the rate of inflation was higher than five percent. This is a 1.3 percentage point increase from the last food report on January 17, 2023.

According to the report, there was a percentage change of 0% in 73.9 percent of lower-middle-income nations and 48% of upper-middle-income countries with inflation rates above 5%. According to the bank, food inflation in high-income nations was also more than 5% in 44.4% of the countries, or 1.9 percentage points lower than in the last food update.

The report said that in real terms, food price inflation exceeded overall inflation in 71 per cent of the 165 countries where data was available.

“According to the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), the recent attacks by Houthi rebels on ships in the Red Sea have triggered a 40 per cent decrease in trade volumes in the Suez Canal, which is decreasing global food security.”

It said the World Bank’s Global Economics Prospects 2024 report emphasised on the critical problem of food insecurity within the context of various challenges.

“In 2023, food prices, a significant component of the agricultural price index, declined by nine per cent because supplies of major crops were ample, except for rice, which declined by 27 per cent.

“Food prices are expected to decline further in 2024 and 2025, although potential risks such as energy cost increases, adverse weather events, trade restrictions, and geopolitical uncertainty could affect them.”

The report said that a blog post from the World Bank Agriculture and Food Global Practice discussed the urgent need for circular food systems to address environmental challenges.

“Circular food systems, which emphasise reduce-reuse-recycle-remove approaches, are proposed as a way to build profitable, sustainable, low-emission food systems.”

The World Bank Group said in response to the global food security crisis, it had scaled up its food and nutrition security response. “The bank is now making 45 billion dollars available through a combination of 22 billion dollars in new lending and 23 billion dollars from existing portfolio.

“Our food and nutrition security portfolio now spans across 90 countries.

“It includes both short-term interventions such as expanding social protection, also longer-term resilience such as boosting productivity and climate-smart agriculture.”

The bank said its intervention was expected to benefit 335 million people, equivalent to 44 per cent of the number of undernourished people. It said around 53 per cent of the beneficiaries were women who were disproportionately more affected by the crisis.

” Some examples include the 766 million dollars West Africa Food Systems Resilience Programme, aimed to increase preparedness against food insecurity and improve the resilience of food systems in West Africa. ”

It stated that there was an additional 345 million dollars commitment currently under preparation for Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.

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