As of September 2018, 9.8 million people (43.6% of the rural population) were estimated to be in Food Crisis and Emergency (IPC Phase 3 and Phase 4). An estimated 2.6 million are classified in IPC Phase 4 nationwide: these people require urgent action to reduce their food deficits and to protect their livelihoods. The current Phase 3 and 4 estimates correspond to a 17.4% increase (from 26.2% to 43.6%) compared to the previous analysis for the same time period last year (2017). Projections suggest that from November 2018 to February 2019, the total population in IPC Phase 3 and IPC Phase 4 is expected to increase to 10.6 million (47.1% of the rural population).
Out of all 34 provinces nationwide 3 provinces (Badghis, Nuristan and Kandahar) have been classified as IPC Phase 4. No province is classified in IPC Phase 1 and only 4 provinces (Kabul, Parwan, Khost and Kapisa) are classified in IPC Phase 2. The remaining 27 provinces were classified in IPC Phase 3: Badakhshan, Kunduz, Takhar, Baghlan, Kunar, Laghman, Nangarhar, Faryab, Jawzjan, Balkh, Samangan, Sar-i-Pul, Daykundi, Bamyan, Wardak, Ghazni, Logar, Panjshir, Paktia, Paktika, Uruzgan, Zabul, Helmand, Nimroz, Ghor, Farah and Herat. Additionally, no provinces were classified in Phase 5.
The number of Phase 4 provinces is expected to increase to 5, adding Badakhshan and Daykundi. Out of the 27 provinces classified in Phase 3, seven had very high proportions of the population that are actually expected to be in IPC Phase 4; these are Badakhshan (18%), Daykundi (15%), Farah (15%), Ghor (15%), Uruzgan (15%), Herat (15%) and Helmand (15%).
The results of the IPC analysis show that Afghanistan is experiencing a major livelihood crisis. This crisis has been primarily caused by the severe drought, which limits food production and depletes farmers and livestock keepers of assets and livelihoods; however, the years of civil conflict and instability as well as the severely degraded condition of much of the land have compounded the impacts of the drought, leading to the food security crisis situation we are witnessing today.