Zimbabwe grain deficit to widen by 1.17 million tons as nationwide hunger looms large



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Zimbabwe grain deficit to widen by 1.17 million tons as nationwide hunger looms large

The Republic of Zimbabwe, former Rhodesia, a grief-sickened landlocked Southern African nation having a lower-middle income economy, which had contracted 7.4 per cent this year thus far following a jawdropping shrinkage of 8.3 per cent last year, would face off a grain deficit of 1.17 million tons this year despite a marginal increase in production, which in effect would leave a large portion of its population with a havoc-scale food shortage, the country’s official crop report had unveiled.

Aside from that, according to the official crop report of Zimbabwe, a staggering 70 per cent population of which had been residing below poverty line or earning less than $3.20 per day, the Southern African country having a vast reserve of coal, gold, platinum, copper and other metallic and non-metallic ores, would require a minimum of 2.23 million tons of grains every year to feed its entire population.

Nonetheless, according to Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Land and Agriculture, the country’s grain output rose marginally to 1.06 million tons this year compared to a 0.94 million tons harvested at the same time a year earlier, however, the stabbing readings had revealed a deficit of more than 100 per cent this year, while 2019 had witnessed a deficit of 0.70 million tons, but the shortfalls were narrowed by the reserves of 2018.

Zimbabwe in dire strait as erratic rain and drastic droughts weigh

On top of that, since the Zimbabwean Reserve Bank had been running short of liquidities to import grains, the World Food Programme has currently been leading humanitarian efforts to feed tens of thousands of Zimbabweans, however, the country’s official crop report published on Saturday said that over 50 per cent of the Southern African nation’s rural districts would not survive the dry season.

Adding further strains, the pandemic outbreak had compounded the scenario further for the Zimbabwean economy which had already been languishing lavishly following a series of droughts last year alongside an erratic monsoon this year, suggesting an excruciating path ahead for the Zimbabwean people over the dry season that usually lasts up to end-October.