Linked to the immediate public health consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic are those of economic and food security, particularly significant for low- and middle-income countries. Currently more than 821 million people globally go hungry, with 100 million of those suffering acute hunger, and this will worsen if the evolving economic emergency becomes a food security emergency.
Sub-Saharan African countries rely on trade for food security and for revenue; they imported more than 40 million tons of cereal from around the world in 2018, according to the World Food Programme (WFP). The region faces stark new challenges due to the pandemic.
This event launches the WFP paper COVID-19: Potential impact on the world’s poorest people.
Dr Arif Husain, Chief Economist and Director of Research, Assessment and Monitoring, United Nations World Food Programme
Respondent: Dr Leena Koni Hoffmann, Associate Fellow, Africa Programme, Chatham House
Chair: Professor Tim Benton, Research Director, Emerging Risks; Director, Energy, Environment and Resources Programme, Chatham House