Joint statement: World Bank Group, IMF, WFP and WTO leaders call for urgent coordinated action on food security – World

  • Actions proposed to assist vulnerable countries include the provision of emergency food and the deployment of financial support to households and countries; facilitate unimpeded trade; investing in sustainable food production and nutrition security.

  • Leaders call on the international community to support vulnerable countries through grants to cover urgent funding needs.

Washington, DC – April 13, 2022: Leaders from the World Bank Group (WBG), International Monetary Fund (IMF), United Nations World Food Program (WFP) and World Trade Organization (WTO) have today called for urgent action on Food Security. World Bank Group President David Malpass, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva, WFP Executive Director David Beasley and WTO Managing Director Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala issued the following joint statement before the spring meetings of the IMF and the World Bank Group next week:

“The world is rocked by worsening crises. The fallout from the war in Ukraine adds to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic now entering its third year, while climate change and increased fragility and conflict cause lingering harm to people around the world. entire. Soaring commodity prices and supply shortages are increasing pressure on households around the world and pushing millions more people into poverty. The threat is greatest for the poorest countries where much of their consumption comes from food imports, but vulnerability is increasing rapidly in middle-income countries, which are home to the majority of the world’s poor. World Bank estimates warn that for every one percentage point increase in food prices, 10 million people are pushed into extreme poverty around the world.

“Rising food prices are exacerbated by a dramatic increase in the cost of natural gas, a key ingredient in nitrogen fertilizers. Soaring fertilizer prices along with significant reductions in global supplies have significant implications for food production in most countries, including major producers and exporters, which are heavily dependent on fertilizer imports. Rising food prices and supply shocks can fuel social tensions in many affected countries, especially those that are already fragile or affected by conflict.

“We call on the international community to urgently support vulnerable countries through coordinated actions ranging from the provision of emergency food, financial support, increased agricultural production and open trade. We are committed to combining our expertise and funding to rapidly scale up our policy and financial support to help vulnerable countries and households, as well as to increase domestic agricultural production and supply to affected countries. We can ease balance of payments pressures and work with all countries to keep trade flows open. In addition, we will further strengthen our monitoring of food vulnerabilities and rapidly expand our multi-faceted policy advice to affected countries, guided by the comparative advantages of our respective institutions.

“We also urge the international community to help meet urgent funding needs, including through grants. This should include funding for immediate food supplies, safety nets to meet the needs of the poor and small farmers facing higher input prices. We also urge all countries to keep trade open and avoid restrictive measures such as food or fertilizer export bans that further exacerbate the suffering of the most vulnerable people. It is particularly important not to impose export restrictions on humanitarian food purchases by the United Nations World Food Programme.

“It is essential to quickly provide coordinated support to countries facing food insecurity. We stand ready to work with our multilateral and bilateral partners to help countries address this urgent crisis. »

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