Once again, it is the world’s poor who risk becoming collateral damage.
As war thunders on in Ukraine, the most deprived people in the Middle East, Central Asia and much of Africa will get caught in the crossfire as the price of food escalates and its availability dwindles.
In 2021, almost 700mn people, or 9 per cent of the world’s population — nearly two-thirds of them in sub-Saharan Africa — lived on below $1.90 a day, the World Bank’s definition of extreme poverty.
Any substantial rise in food prices could send millions more tumbling back into this category. A report by Standard & Poor’s predicts the food crisis will last through 2024 and possibly beyond.
It warns that it could affect social stability, economic growth and sovereign ratings.