Why Is Sub-Saharan Africa Chronically Food-Insecure?
Analysis of Root Causes in the Historical and Global Contexts
Section I. Introduction
Section II. Common Explanations of the Sub-Saharan African Food Insecurity
2. Unfavourable Weather
3. Civil Conflicts
4. Corruption and Poor Government Management
Section III. Examination of Root Causes in the Historical and Global Political Economic Contexts
1. Colonial Legacy
2. Post-Independence and Food Aid Politics
3. Neoliberal Economic Restructuring and Trade Liberalisation
Section IV. Conclusion
Sub-Saharan African (SSA) is the only region in the world where poverty and hunger are significantly on the increase. While population grows fast, the amount of food produced in their lands are declining since the 1970s.1 While the rest of the world improved their agricultural productivity, SSA is the only region on earth where cereal production per capita was lower in 2001 than 1961.2 The economic crises from the 1980s onwards significantly have impeded their financial capacity to import necessary amount of foods to fill the gap. They are heavily dependent on international food assistance from one fifth in 1990 to one half of the total in 2003.3 The number of the under-nourished and the hungry are on the increase, reaching 33% of production as of 2005.4 About 40 million in any one year face acute hunger.5 More than 70% of the food insecure is found in rural areas.6 What make it worse are frequent natural disasters such as droughts and floods and human-inducing disasters such as civil conflicts.
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