Millions face hunger in Myanmar as food shortage deepens

WION Web Team
Yangon Updated: May 28, 2021, 01:36 PM(IST)

More and more poor people have lost their jobs and are unable to afford food. Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

According to the report provided by the World Food Programme, price increases have been particularly high in border states including Rakhine, Kachin and Chin.  

In the wake of the military coup and deepening financial crisis, millions of Myanmar citizen will go hungry in the coming months, the World Food Programme has warned.

Close to 6.4 million will face a severe hunger crisis in the country which is already suffering from political turmoil since the February 1 coup.

Rising 'hunger and desperation is not new in Myanmar, over and above the 2.8 million people considered to be food insecure in Myanmar before the military takeover. 

“More and more poor people have lost their jobs and are unable to afford food. A concerted response is required now to alleviate immediate suffering, and to prevent an alarming deterioration in food security.”, said WFP Myanmar Country Director Stephen Anderson.

According to the report provided by the World Food Programme, price increases have been particularly high in border states including Rakhine, Kachin and Chin.  

“In Kachin state, rice prices have risen by up to 43 per cent in some townships and cooking oil by 32 per cent”, said WFP.“The price of fuel has increased by roughly 30 per cent nationwide.”  

Myanmar’s army seized power from the democratically elected civilian government on Feb.1, plunging the Southeast Asian nation into turmoil and cracking down on mass protests and a nationwide civil disobedience movement with brutal force, killing more than 700 people, a monitoring group said.

The crisis has brought the banking system to a standstill, shuttering many branches, leaving businesses unable to make payments and customers unable to withdraw cash.

The coronavirus pandemic took a heavy toll on the economy, which had been growing as it emerged from decades of isolation and financial mismanagement under former military governments. 

(With inputs from agencies)

Read in App