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Pakistan, Afghanistan among Global Hunger Hotspots: FAO & WFP Hunger Hotspots Report

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According to the ‘Hunger Hotspots: FAO-WFP early warnings on acute food insecurity, June to November 2023 Outlook’ report released on May 29, 2023, by the United Nation (UN) agencies of  Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP), globally Hunger is set to worsen in 18 ‘hotspots’ comprising a total of 22 countries including the regions in India’s neighbours countries of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Myanmar.

  • Hotspots are places where acute hunger is at a high risk of worsening from June to November 2023.
  • The report has assessed 22 countries where acute food insecurity can potentially increase in magnitude and severity for 18 areas.

Note: The report calls for urgent humanitarian action to save lives and livelihoods, and to prevent starvation and death in eight regions of Afghanistan, Haiti, Nigeria, the Sahel region (Burkina Faso and Mali), Somalia, South Sudan, the Sudan and Yemen.


i.Highest Concern Nations: Afghanistan, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen remain at the highest concern level

  • Haiti, the Sudan and Sahel region (Burkina Faso and Mali) and Sudan have been elevated to the highest concern levels.

ii.Very High Concern Nations: Pakistan, the Central African Republic, Ethiopia, Kenya, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Syrian Arab Republic are hotspots with very high concern.

  • The warning is also extended to Myanmar.
  • These hotspots have many people facing critical acute food insecurity.

iii.Lebanon has been added to the list of hotspots, joining Malawi and Central America (El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua) that remain hotspots.

iv.As per the report, Pakistan’s worsening economic and political crises could further reduce households’ purchasing power and ability to afford food and essential goods in the country, where 6% of the rural population across the 43 districts analysed are assessed to be in Emergency between April and October 2023.

Causes of Acute Food Insecurity:

i.The growing economic conflicts in low and middle-income nations.

  • 2023 is expected to bring a global economic slowdown amid monetary tightening in high-income countries, increasing the cost of credit, and weakening local currencies in low- and middle-income economies.

ii.The Sudan Crisis Spill-over: This has increased population displacement and hunger among people forced from their homes in search of refuge and those hosting them.

iii.Weather extremes, such as heavy rains, tropical storms, cyclones, flooding, drought and increased climate variability, remain significant drivers in some countries and regions. The May 2023 forecast suggests an 82% likelihood of El Niño conditions starting in the May–July 2023 period.


i.The report recommended urgent humanitarian action to save lives and livelihoods and prevent starvation and death in hotspots

ii.It provides concrete country-specific recommendations on priorities for immediate emergency response and anticipatory action.

About Hunger Hotspots Report:

It is part of a series of analytical products produced under the Global Network Against Food Crises, to enhance and coordinate the generation and sharing of evidence-based information and analysis for preventing and addressing food crises. It identifies areas where acute food insecurity could increase during the outlook period.

Recent Related News:

i.The second ILO–UNICEF (International Labour Organization – United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund) joint report on social protection for children titled ‘More than a billion reasons: The urgent need to build universal social protection for children’ was released on March 01, 2023.

ii.According to the 9th edition of the World Bank’s “Women, Business, and the Law 2023” report, women across the world only have 77% of the legal rights that men do, and nearly 2.4 billion women of working age live in countries that do not provide them the same rights as men.

About Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO):

Director-General– QU Dongyu
Headquarter– Rome, Italy
Establishment– 1945