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Niger coup will add pressure on West Africa food markets – World Bank



The World Bank has said the coup in Niger will likely mount additional pressure on the region’s food markets.

The Bretton Woods Institute disclosed this in its September Food Security update and the bank’s response to the challenges.

The report noted that about 7 million people stand the risk of falling into food insecurity over the coup in Niger and the subsequent sanctions by ECOWAS.

It stated,

It noted that in West Africa, the population of people in need of food assistance has risen from 10.7 million in 2019 to almost 40 million in 2022. It attributed the causes of the region’s food insecurity to “civil insecurity and conflict, which have led to forced displacement; climatic shocks; political instability; the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic; and the war in Ukraine.”

The bank projected that food prices including major staple foods will see an increase in the near term on the back of this geopolitical and economic malaise.

It said,

The bank noted it already has a couple of interventions aimed at boosting food systems in the region. It said,

It also noted there is an extra $345 million under preparation for Togo and Sierra-Leone.

Food inflation has been at an all-time high in many countries in West Africa over recent natural, social, and political issues within the region and abroad. In Nigeria, the statistics bureau puts the food inflation rate at 29.34%. Ghana’s food inflation for July stood at 55%.

Recent reports in the media have shed light on the trade implications of the sanctions imposed on Niger over the coup deposing President Bazoum in July. The ECOWAS group closed all country borders with Niger over the coup. This led to an over 80% increase in the prices of onions in Ghana as the commodity was imported from Niger.

Nigeria’s trade with Niger is estimated to be worth around $ 226 million- most of which are agricultural produce.