Ukraine – The African continent is facing a new challenge after having defeated the Covid-19 situation. Most affected would be the North African countries that would be facing a sharp rise in food prices and shortage too.
This has been estimated by Kiel Institute for the World Economy. The institute has also thrown light on the fact that Ukraine supplies large quantities of grain to North African states in particular, which other sources of supply could not replace even in the long run.
Exports are dwindling due to the onslaught of the Russian invasion that has now entered its third week and has been vehemently opposed by nations worldwide. It is estimated that the supply situation is going to worsen across the continent.
Ukraine and Russia together account for about 29 per cent of the world’s wheat, and nearly a fifth of the corn trade, in addition to also being important sources of other commodities and metals. The conflict has led to a surge in commodity and metal prices, adding to inflationary pressures on the global economy. The International Monetary Fund has warned the conflict and subsequent sanctions imposed on Moscow, will have a “severe impact” on the global economy.
The food supply situation could be altered forever as there are very less chances of finding sudden alternatives for depending nations like Egypt, Tunisia, apart from some South African countries like Cameroon, Algeria, Libya, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Morocco and Mozambique that would also see their wheat and cereal imports slide if Ukraine exports cease.
Ukraine has continued to be a major supplier and these disruptions could mean a long gap for African continent. Other cereals would become 24 per cent more expensive in the long term in Tunisia, almost 9 per cent higher in Algeria and Libya, and more than 4 per cent costlier in Egypt, according to the institute. Wheat prices would go up by 9 per cent in Kenya, 8 per cent in Uganda, 5 per cent in Tunisia, 4 per cent in Mozambique and more than 3 per cent in Egypt, the report said.