Global food import bill to jump to record $1.9 trillion: FAO
The world food import bill is expected to surpass $1.9 trillion in 2022, a 10 percent increase...
The world food import bill is expected to surpass $1.9 trillion in 2022, a 10 percent increase compared with last year's record level, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has said.
The figure, released in a report on Friday (Nov 11), marks "an all-time high" due to the depreciating values of currencies against the US dollar – the main currency of exchange on international markets – as well as Russia's ongoing war in Ukraine.
"The bulk of the increase in the [global food import] bill is accounted for by high-income countries, due mostly to higher world prices, while volumes are also expected to rise," the report said.
Consequences will be more dramatic for economically vulnerable countries, it added.
"For instance, the aggregate food import bill for the group of low-income countries is expected to remain almost unchanged even though it is predicted to shrink by 10 percent in volume terms, pointing to a growing accessibility issue for these countries," the FAO said.
Sub-Saharan Africa, already hard-hit by malnutrition, is expected to spend $4.8bn more on food imports, despite a decrease in volumes.
"These are alarming signs from a food security perspective," FAO said.