Prices Skyrocket, Humanitarian Needs Escalating in Sudan as Fighting Enters its Third Week
Mercy Corps warns that the prices of food, fuel, water and other essentials in Sudan are skyrocketing as fighting enters its third week and humanitarian organizations confront enormous security and operational challenges in responding to significant displacement and rapidly escalating needs.
Mercy Corps Country Director for Sudan, Sibongani Kayola, says,
"More than 100,000 people have already fled Sudan to neighboring countries since the escalation of violence on April 15th. Millions left behind are now facing a dire humanitarian emergency, with shortages of food, water, medicines and fuel leading prices to skyrocket and making these essentials completely unaffordable for many and worsening the lives of those who could barely make ends meet prior to the start of the conflict. Roughly one-third of the population already needed humanitarian assistance even before this recent fighting began.
"Information gathered by our teams shows a staggering 134% increase in the average price of basic essentials in Khartoum, where hundreds of thousands remain trapped in crossfire. Fuel prices in Khartoum have increased by 1,251%, and the price of wheat flour, rice, and sugar have all increased by 100% or more. The violence in Khartoum has also affected the affordability of basic goods elsewhere in Sudan, including in Gedaref, where prices for a basic basket of goods have increased by an average of 41%.
"Food security is also likely to worsen if the next planting season is disrupted, which would devastate food production. Mercy Corps has re-opened offices in Gedaref and South Kordofan, and we are providing access to seeds and other inputs."
"Humanitarian organizations in Sudan are facing formidable challenges in meeting the exponentially growing humanitarian needs, and our staff face enormous personal risks and our offices have been looted. We call on all parties to ensure security for humanitarian organizations and the communities we serve, allowing us to deliver urgently needed assistance."
The Mercy Corps offices in Gedaref and South Kordofan are now operational, and we are also working to ramp up our humanitarian response in Khartoum and South Darfur. Our priority as we work to resume our programs is to respond to urgent needs while also continuing our ongoing work assisting farmers so that the upcoming agricultural season is not disrupted, which would have far-reaching consequences for food security.