Kuwait ranks 5th in Middle East and North Africa region in terms of food security

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KUWAIT CITY, April 30: During the last quarter of 2022, Kuwait ranked fifth in terms of food security among the countries of the Middle East and North Africa, according to a recent report by the “Global Data” index, reports Al-Rai daily. The Zawya website, which published the report, stated that the UAE ranked first, followed by Saudi Arabia third among the countries of the Middle East and North Africa region, while Qatar ranked fourth and Bahrain ninth.

Zawya quoted the report as saying that the countries of the MENA region are affected by the supply chain problems and the consequent increase in the prices of basic raw materials such as food and fuel, which led to increased food risks, in addition to the increase in debt. The report pointed out that the MENA region depends mainly on Russia and Ukraine for its imports of basic foodstuffs, which explains the high level of risk for the countries of the region from 54 points to 54.3 points out of 100 points in the index for the last quarter of 2022.

The report quoted the expert in “Global Data”, Bindi Patel, as saying that the decision of “OPEC Plus” to reduce its oil production could affect the profitability of the oil-producing countries in the “MENA” region, which depend to a large extent on oil exports to move their economies. “At the same time, many countries in the region depend on food imports, while the problems of food supply chains continue to create more challenges for their food security, due to factors including the conflict in Ukraine and Syria, and droughts in the countries of the Horn of Africa and Kenya,” he added. The report indicated that despite the application of more stringent monetary policies, the level of inflation in the Middle East and North Africa region will remain high at worrisome levels, with a slight decline expected.

The report estimated the inflation rate in the region as a whole at 18.7 percent by 2023, with very high rates expected in Egypt at 23.3 percent, Iran at 40.7 percent, Turkey at 43.7 percent, and Nigeria at 19.3 percent. The report concluded that the risks for the countries of the region remain, in general, high, with the expectation of a further slowdown in the global economy, increased tightening in monetary policies, geopolitical tensions, high levels of poverty and food insecurity, all of which will weigh on the economies of the region. In terms of the global ranking, Switzerland, Denmark and Singapore occupied the first three ranks in the index, which takes into account the latest data available in the field of macroeconomics and political, social, technological, environmental and legal considerations.

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