Understanding and addressing poverty and food insecurity in Afghanistan
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Original versionBergen: Chr. Michelsen Institute (CMI Insight 2023:1) 6 p.
An estimated 28 million Afghans, more than two thirds of the country’s total population, struggle to put food on the table. A wide array of socio-economic and environmental changes has led to this crisis. This CMI Insight documents the changes and illustrates how they are together shaping farming, off-farm employment, food security and livelihoods. Based on research conducted in the Kabul region of Afghanistan, the Insight highlights two main factors that have contributed to the grave situation. First, over the past two decades there has been a significant transition of employment from farming to the construction and urban-based service sectors that has turned out to be unsustainable and collapsed after the Taliban takeover of the country in 2021. Second, environmental changes are collectively placing severe constraints on farmers and the country’s agricultural sector as a whole as they lead to drought, water scarcity, and changes in land use from farming to built-up areas. This Insight highlights that while the political change in August 2021 triggered sudden poverty and hunger, longer-term multiple socio-economic and environmental changes contributed to shaping the context for vulnerability. Therefore, while short-term relief is necessary to save people from acute hunger, building institutions to address enduring multiple structural challenges is equally important for achieving sustained well-being in the longer run.
PublisherChr. Michelsen Institute
SeriesCMI Insight 2023:1
CMI Insight 2023:1