The Season So Far
• The first stage of Southern Africa’s 2021/22 season has been marked by drought conditions particularly in Madagascar, north and central Mozambique, Tanzania, Malawi and eastern Zambia. Southern Angola and Namibia are also affected.
• The October-December 2021 period has been the driest or second driest since 1981 across areas of northern Mozambique, southern Tanzania, most of Malawi, southern Madagascar and the Angola-Namibia border.
• These conditions led to delays in the start of the season of up to one month relative to the usual timing, accompanied by strongly below average vegetation development. Recovery is still possible, provided abundant and regular rains are received from January onwards and there is no early end to the rainfall season.
• Short range forecasts offer mixed perspectives. In mid-January, wetter than average conditions should be expected in the region except for Mozambique, Tanzania and Angola where dryness is expected to continue. The month is forecast to end drier than average across the region. Good consistent rainfall in February is fundamental to improve crop production prospects in many areas of the region. Current areas of concern include southern Madagascar, Mozambique-Tanzania and southern Angola-Namibia.
Areas of Concern
Seasonal forecasts for January-March point to near average conditions across the region, except for drier than average conditions in northwest Angola and above average rainfall in Tanzania. So far, the predictions have diverged from actual conditions.