In 2019, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) continued to work hard to achieve a world free from hunger, assisting nearly 100 million people in more than 80 countries. The European Union (EU) has remained one of our most vital partners, building on past achievements to continue saving and changing millions of lives and further narrow the gap to Zero Hunger.
Today, some 690 million people – 8.9 percent of the global population – do not have enough to eat. The latest Global Report on Food Crises revealed that of these, 135 million people faced acute hunger last year. This is the highest level of severe food insecurity and malnutrition documented since the first edition of the report in 2017.
Conflict and climate change remained the main drivers of hunger in 2019. War and insecurity continued to uproot families and create economic turmoil, while climate change caused more frequent and extreme weather events that displaced communities and destroyed countless harvests.
As hunger kept rising in 2019, the outlook for 2020 is even more worrying. WFP has projected that the number of people facing acute hunger in 2020 could almost double, reaching 265 million, as a result of the socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Together for Zero Hunger
In these challenging times and with just 10 years to go to reach the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), 2020 ushers in a Decade of Action to accelerate solutions to the world’s biggest challenges ranging from hunger and poverty to gender inequality and climate change.
Multilateralism and strong partnerships like the one between WFP and the EU are critical to make the SDGs a reality within that tight timeframe.
The EU’s dedication to promoting peace and security while investing in economies, creating jobs and building resilience to climate change is vital to drive the SDGs agenda forward for the benefit of millions of men, women and children across the world. WFP believes that these actions – firmly outlined among the European Commission’s priorities – lay the foundations for a world free from hunger, amplifying the impact of WFP’s life-saving and life-changing assistance.
Together we can make a major contribution to achieving the SDGs – our shared vision for the future. 2020 marks the 75th anniversary of the United Nations, which coincides with an unprecedented global health crisis that has deeply affected millions of people. At a time of this great disruption for the world and its most vulnerable citizens, WFP’s collaboration with the EU, the UN’s key partner, is building on its accomplishments from 2019 to help create a better future for those furthest behind.