The repercussions of Covid-19 could yet be more deadly than the virus itself. We must act now to save lives
Famine is riding alongside pestilence, on the tail of war. Though coronavirus leaves no part of the world untouched, its impact will be harshest in places that were already suffering. Yet the problems it brings with it may prove more deadly than Covid-19 itself. Even in the richest countries, coronavirus has left families in hunger; for the poorest, it could mean starvation.
The head of the World Food Programme warns that we are now on the brink of a hunger pandemic, with the prospect of multiple famines “of biblical proportions” within a few months, across three dozen countries. Households already struggling to survive have lost the work that fed them. Remittances sent home by family members abroad are predicted to fall by around a fifth due to Covid-19. Tourism has vanished. Children are missing the nutritious school meals they depend upon. Quarantine regulations and transport issues are disrupting food supply chains.