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Food security, poverty, and economic policy in the Middle East and North Africa

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  • Löfgren, Hans
  • Richards, Alan

Abstract

In MENA, household food insecurity, which is closely related to poverty and undernourishment, is most severe in rural areas and concentrated within Iraq, Sudan, and Yemen. 25% of the MENA population may be poor and 7% undernourished. The key to increased national and household-level food security is pro-poor growth, driven by export-oriented, labor-intensive sectors. Agricultural sector policies should be subordinate to the pro-poor growth goal and not to the goal of food self-sufficiency. Such a strategy requires conflict resolution; macroeconomic stability; physical and human capital accumulation; reliance on markets and the private sector, and diffusion of ecologically friendly farming practices.

Suggested Citation

  • Löfgren, Hans & Richards, Alan, 2003. "Food security, poverty, and economic policy in the Middle East and North Africa," TMD discussion papers 111, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  • Handle: RePEc:fpr:tmddps:111
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    File URL: http://www.ifpri.org/sites/default/files/publications/tmdp111.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Richards, Alan, 1994. "The Egyptian farm labor market revisited," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 239-261, April.
    2. Ravallion, Martin, 2001. "Growth, Inequality and Poverty: Looking Beyond Averages," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1803-1815, November.
    3. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116.
    4. Shah, Tushaar & Molden, David J. & Sakthivadivel, Ramasamy & Seckler, David, 2000. "The global groundwater situation: overview of opportunities and challenges," IWMI Books, International Water Management Institute, number 113506.
    5. Shah, T. & Molden, D. & Sakthivadivel, R. & Seckler, D., 2000. "The global groundwater situation: overview of opportunities and challenges," IWMI Books, Reports H025885, International Water Management Institute.
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    Cited by:

    1. Urban, Frauke & Benders, René M.J. & Moll, Henri C., 2009. "Energy for rural India," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 86(Supplemen), pages 47-57, November.
    2. Jane, Harrigan, 2011. "Food Security in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and sub-Saharan Africa: A Comparative Analysis," CEI Working Paper Series 2011-5, Center for Economic Institutions, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    food security ; Poverty ; Africa; North ; Middle East ; Development policies ; Economic policy ;

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