No fewer than 11 African countries will bear the brunt of the fallout of the Russian/Ukraine crisis by any continuing halt to Ukraine’s grain exports caused by the war.
A report from Germany’s Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW) this weekend said that grain imports would be noticeably disrupted in Tunisia, Egypt, South Africa, Cameroon, Algeria, Libya, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Morocco and Mozambique.
“The war in Ukraine could significantly worsen the supply of cereals used in food production in African countries, making food more expensive if Ukraine ceases to be a grain supplier,” the institute said.
“The country supplies large quantities of grain to North African states in particular, which other sources of supply could not replace even in the long run.”
As a result of the sudden halt of Ukrainian exports and a sharp drop in Russian exports, grain prices have risen globally, with wheat around 14-year highs. The conflict has closed grain export ports.
The fighting in Russia and Ukraine has seriously affected shipments of wheat, animal feed grains, and edible oils that add nearly 30% to global exports.
”Due to the war, Ukraine is likely to be initially cut off from the global economy, trade routes have been cut, infrastructure destroyed and all remaining production factors are likely to be directed towards a war economy,” said the institute.
“Losing Ukraine as a supplier will noticeably worsen the supply situation across the continent.”
Tunisia could be one of the hardest-hit countries, where over 15% of the country’s wheat imports would be reduced. Egypt’s imports would be reduced by over 17%, while South Africa’s would be reduced by 7%.
German agriculture ministers will meet on Friday to discuss the implications of the Ukraine conflict for global food security.
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