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New World Bank Report Says Zimbabwe Has The Highest Food Price Inflation Globally

New World Bank Report Says Zimbabwe Has The Highest Food Price Inflation Globally

A new World Bank report has ranked Zimbabwe as the country with the highest food price inflation in the world.

This is despite official figures showing that price levels have been trending downward in recent months.

The continuation of restrictions on fertilizer exports from the Black Sea region, sanctions on exports from Belarus, and China’s fertilizer export ban could further destabilise tight fertilizer markets, The News Hawks reported citing the World Bank report.

The Breton Woods institution warns that if energy and fertilizer prices do not moderate in 2023 and 2024 as expected, food prices could increase substantially.

The report shows that Zimbabwe’s monthly food inflation increased by up to 30% this year.

Other countries which also reported high inflation, although lower than Zimbabwe, include Venezuela, conflict-hit Somalia and Lebanon.

If agricultural commodity prices increase, it is likely that the number of people facing food insecurity will continue to increase.

It is projected that the number of people subject to severe food insecurity will exceed 200 million in 2022.

Populations most exposed to food crises typically live in countries facing extreme weather events and conflict, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The World Bank says price spikes in food and agricultural commodities will affect vulnerable populations by limiting access to affordable staple foods, which can lead to widespread food insecurity.

Effects of climate change including flooding, drought, abnormal dryness, and cyclones, in East and southern Africa, place additional pressure on food security through agricultural production and price channels. 

Zimbabwe has over the greater part of the year been battling rising inflation and a weakening domestic currency.

Official figures show that the year-on-year inflation rate for October 2022 decreased to 268.8% from 280.4% in September 2022, while the month-on-month inflation rate in October 2022 was 3.2%, down from the September 2022 rate of 3.5%.

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