Yemen is gripped by one of the world′s largest humanitarian crises. Over 50% of Yemen′s population cannot access food necessary for their survival, while poverty, hunger and malnutrition are exacerbating due to recurrent crises, the war and conflict conditions, COVID-19 pandemic and the fallout of the Russia-Ukraine war, with its direct and indirect repercussions on the already dire nutritional and humanitarian situation in the country.
Of greatest concern is the growing food insecurity levels in Yemen and the potential that some pockets in the country may slip into famine. As the world’s attention is shifted towards developing situation in Ukraine, apart from what is happening in Yemen now entering into its eighth year of conflict and war that brought a dire humanitarian situation to the country. During March 2022 Pledging Conference, Yemen received financial pledges of about 30% only out of the total humanitarian assistance required for 2022, i.e. less than the amount received during 2020 which witnessed the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic. This is emphatically far short for addressing the deteriorating humanitarian situation in the country, let alone recovery and economic growth needs. Without further action by the international community to raise funding, the humanitarian situation will become even worse, and likewise the suffering and frustration among people.
Living conditions in Yemen are expected to deteriorate considerably in the wake of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, as food insecurity and malnutrition have already reached alarming levels. This is mainly due in part to deteriorated local food production and agricultural assets, and hiking food prices.
Considering the current situation in Yemen, the Russia-Ukraine war will undoubtedly trigger more severe effects on the poorest and most vulnerable groups. This is mainly due to the fact that Yemen imports 45% of its wheat needs from Russia and Ukraine, and that food commodities account for at least two-thirds of total household expenditure, which puts huge pressures on food insecurity and malnutrition levels, especially among children, with many families being forced to pawn their valuables to buy food, resulting in higher school dropout rates among the children from the poorest households.
This analytical paper explores the socio-economic implications of the Russia-Ukraine war on Yemen, with a particular focus on future trends and prospects; as well as the potential risks and impacts across the social and economic spheres in Yemen. Therefore, support must be ensured to design and implement interventions in line with the humanitariandevelopment response, and to promote investment in local food production and capacity building, as the best pathway to boost market commodities and contribute to more stabilized environment applying a multi-faceted approach addressing the humanitarian, development and peace building dimensions.