Yemen: IPC Acute Food Insecurity Analysis - July – December 2020 (Issued July 2020)



High levels of food insecurity persist, amidst deterioration of the economy, conflict and impact of the COVID-19 pandemic

Key highlights

How Severe, How Many and When: Out of the total population of 7.9 million people in the 133 analysed districts, two million were estimated to be highly food insecure (IPC Phase 3 and above) in the period from February to April 2020, representing 25 percent of the population analysed.
The IPC analysis estimates that in the period from July to December 2020, the population facing high levels of acute food insecurity (IPC Phase 3 and above) increases to 3.2 million people (40 percent of the analysed population) if humanitarian food assistance is kept at the current levels.
Although compared to the 2018/19 IPC results, this analysis (July – December 2020) shows an improvement with more than half a million people having transitioned to below IPC Phase 3, this was driven primarily by scale-up of humanitarian food assistance which increased by 47 percent in the same period. Given the fragility of Yemen, these gains could be reversed quickly if the level and scale of humanitarian assistance reduces or other significant shocks occur.

Where and Who: Food insecurity is high in areas characterised by active fighting, which leads to access restrictions that affect coverage of humanitarian food assistance, access to markets, and constant population displacements. The analysis shows that out of the 133 districts analysed, 16 are in Emergency (IPC Phase 4), 103 are in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) while the remainder are in Stressed (IPC Phase 2). In terms of severity, the 16 worst affected districts, classified in Emergency (IPC Phase 4), are located in eight governorates: Al Dhale’e (3), Marib (3), Al Bayda (2), Shabwah (2), Abyan (2), Taizz (2), Al Jawf (1) and Hadramaut (1). In terms of magnitude, the governorates with the highest numbers of people in Crisis or worse (IPC Phase 3+) are Taizz (590,000), Lahj (487,500) and Hadramaut (465,500). Between the two periods of analysis, February to April and July to December, the increase in people in IPC Phase 3 (Crisis) and above is concentrated in the six governorates, representing 83 percent of the increase, that is, Abyan,
Aden, Al Dhale’e, Hadramaut, Lahj and Taizz.

Why: The current economic crisis, crippled by nearly six years of conflict, coupled with the increasing impact of COVID-19 on livelihoods and economic activities as well as natural hazards affecting the already low levels of local production, have significantly eroded the ability of households to cope with new and intensifying shocks. COVID-19 has dealt a further blow to household incomes by significantly reducing remittances from the Gulf states, an important lifeline for most Yemenis. With reduced incomes and deteriorating purchasing power while food prices increase, most households are increasingly relying on humanitarian food assistance and other unsustainable coping strategies to meet their daily food needs.