Timor-Leste - Food Security Bulletin Edition no. 20 October - December 2020

Situation Report
Originally published
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  • Rice availability (Imports and local production) is sufficient to support local demand.

  • Price index for local rice has been on an upward trend for most part of 2020.

  • Vegetation Health Index is in the green to old green category in most parts of the country in December 2020, a situation that is favourable for agriculture production.

Background and Context

The year 2020 will go down in history as one that disrupted and exacerbated an already fragile global food system leading to job losses, hunger and malnutrition due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This fragility presents an increased risk to food sufficiency in Timor-Leste, where up to 40 percent of cereal consumption1 are met through imports.

In the last quarter of 2020, the Government rolled out a social protection and economic recovery initiative ‘Cesta Basica’ targeting the entire population through provision of food and nonfood items.

Based on the agricultural seasonal calendar, the last quarter of 2020 is traditionally used for land preparation and planting of key staple food crops. With the current rainy season under-way, the first harvest is expected around April/May 2021.