Initial Government forecasts, estimated a 10% increase in cereal production, an 8% increase of pulses and 4% of cassava production in the 2002/03 agricultural season compared to the last season.
However, poor rains recorded in the South and Centre of Mozambique from mid November 2002 could reduce these planned production figures
The maize prices in real terms (corrected for inflation with the Consumer Price Index) at retail level in the cities of Beira, Manica, Tete and Nampula were during the months of October and November lower than those of the same months of the two previous years. The maize prices in Maputo were slightly higher than the previous two years.
The rice prices in real terms at retail level in the cities of Maputo, Tete and Nampula were during the month of November lower than the same month of the two previous years. The rice prices in Beira and Manica were at the same level as the previous two years.
The supply of cereals is considered to be normal for the time of the year in view of the end of the marketing year and the arrivel of the new harvest. The commercial imports of wheat and rice are roughly at the foreseen levels. Total cumulative rice imports are projected to reach levels above 205.000 tons, slightly lower than foreseen and wheat imports are expected to reach levels above 300.000 tons, slightly higher than foreseen at the end of the marketing season. Maize exports, mainly informal transborder trade, were considerable, roughly extimated at levels above 200.000 tons from the Northern and Central part of the country whereas the Southern part of the country imports are at 240.000 tons and are expected to increase. Commercial imports are reported to be adequate to meet the demand up to the end of the marketing year, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
According with the results the number of people in need has increased in about 11%. The revised VAC estimate indicates a total of 654,865 people will require assistance until the next harvest. Over a third of the affected population is in Maputo, Gaza and Inhambane.
Households are suffering from the cumulative effects of HIV and drought. HIV prevalence is estimated to be 13% nationally with the 16.8% in the central region for the 15 -- 49 year age group.
The mean dependency ration is 1.55 with the highest of 1.78 in Tete province
Overall acute malnutrition (wasting) in children 6-59 months is 6.4%, being highest in Gaza (11.2%) and Maputo (8%). Chronic malnutrition (stunting) was found to be 37.9% overall, ranging from 31.9% (Gaza) to 42% (Tete).
Only 37.2% of the households interviewed have access to safe water and 7.4% report having to spend more time to get water.
Most children aged 6-23 months are still being breastfed (77.3%). However, more than half of the children in this age group receive only 2 complementary meals per day.
Morbidity indicators are a reflection of poor hygiene conditions, malaria endemicity and high HIV prevalence.
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