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Crop Prospects and Food Situation, a quarterly publication by Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) Markets and Trade Division, indicates that cereal output and import must both rise in Low-Income Food Deficit Countries.

The report, which was made available to the Ghana News Agency by the FAO, estimated that aggregate cereal production by the 51 Low-Income Food Deficit Countries rose 3.0 per cent in 2020 from the previous year to 502.4 million tonnes, as recoveries in Southern Africa and the Near East outweighed a decline in Central Africa.

It said, however, aggregate cereal import requirements by the group in the 2020/21 marketing year were expected to rise to 74.1 million tonnes, with the Far East and West Africa sub-regions posting the largest additional needs.

According to the report, early production outlooks for 2021 were broadly favourable, but drought-like conditions in Afghanistan and southern Madagascar were of emerging concern.

It assessed 45 countries to be in need of external assistance for food: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cape Verde, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, and Democratic Republic of Congo.

Others are; Djibouti, Eritrea, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Guinea, Haiti, Iraq, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Niger, and Nigeria.

There rest: are Pakistan, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, United Republic of Tanzania, Uganda, Venezuela, Yemen, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

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The Ghana news Agency (GNA) was established on March 5, 1957, i.e. on the eve of Ghana's independence and charged with the "dissemination of truthful unbiased news". It was the first news agency to be established in Sub-Saharan Africa. GNA was part of a comprehensive communication policy that sought to harness the information arm of the state to build a viable, united and cohesive nation-state. GNA has therefore been operating in the unique role of mobilizing the citizens for nation building, economic and social development, national unity and integration.

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