Environmental Change, Conflicts and Internal Displacement as Destabilizing Factors to Food Security in Sudan Econometric Analysis

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Elwasila Saeed Elamin Mohamed

Abstract

This study investigates the relationships between food security measured by the depth of food deficit, environmental change measured by forests land, rainfall, and conflicts represented by internal displacement and arms imports in Sudan, together with income per capita, cereal yield, food imports and food prices. The study uses autoregressive distributed lag bounds test cointegration approach with annual time series data over the period of 1983-2016. The bounds test confirms existence of a long-run equilibrium relationship between food security, environmental change and the number of internally displaced persons (IDPs). In the short run, food security is found to be harmed by fluctuations of rainfall and arms imports, while income per capita and food imports contribute to enhance food security in Sudan. In the long run, food security is found to be negatively affected by fluctuating rainfall and the number of IDPs, while only income per capita contributes to reduce food insecurity. These results indicate that the positive effect of economic growth on food security has been more than outweighed by the negative effects of declining forest land, highly erratic rainfall, prolonged conflicts and high number of IDPs. The research findings imply that the benefits of economic growth should be distributed equitably with inclusion of IDPs so that food security can be enhanced. Forests should be managed sustainably, together with expansion of water harvest projects in Sudan to cope with fluctuations of rainfall. The study provided policy relevance measures to the Sudan's government and humanitarian organizations concerned with promoting food security in situations internal displacement and environmental changes.

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