Food Security: Challenges and Prospects

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November 2014
Abdul-Karim Sadik, Mahmoud El-Solh, Najib Saab
Arab Forum for Environment and Development (AFED)

This report Food Security: Challenges and Prospects highlights the need for more efficient management of the agriculture and water sectors, enhancing the prospects of food security.

Food security is of great concern to Arab countries. They have been pursuing a target of higher food self-sufficiency rate, but achieving this goal remained beyond reach. With limited cultivable land and scarce water resources, Arab countries did not use their agricultural endowments effectively and efficiently. Lack of appropriate agricultural policies and practices diminished the bio-capacity of resources to regenerate their services and threatened agricultural sustainability. The food crisis and the unprecedented spike in food prices in recent years, coupled with export restrictions imposed by some food producing countries, reignited the call to ensure reliable sources for food import-dependent countries like the Arab countries. This report attempts to address issues such as: to what extent can available agricultural resources at country and regional levels meet demand for food in the Arab world? What are the prospects for food self-sufficiency, taking into consideration the growing population and the impact of climate change on land and water resources? And, ultimately, what other options do the Arab countries have to ensure food security?

Africa, Asia
Agriculture, Water