Friday, February 15, 2019

Africa's IDPs

With 40 million displaced around the world, the global financial impact of displacement reaches 13 billion  dollars annually.
The report also notes that the impacts of internal displacement are far higher in low-income countries, partially due the lack of capacity to minimise impacts of crises.
The Central African Republic (CAR) is one such low-income country, with over 70 percent of the country estimated to be living in poverty.
CAR has seen decades of instability and violence, and its most recently conflict has resulted in an ongoing, dire humanitarian crisis and the displacement of over 1 million people, more than half of whom have stayed within the country’s borders.
According to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), one in four children is either displaced or a refugee.
IDMC calculated that the economic impacts of internal displacement in the central African country between 2013 and 2017 total 950 million dollars. This represents 230 million dollars annually, equivalent to 11 percent of the country’s pre-crisis gross domestic product (GDP).
Almost 40 percent of the total cost comes from the impacts of displacement on nutrition and food security.
Approximately two million people are severely food insecure in the country, while UNICEF projects that over 43,000 children under the age of five will face severe acute malnutrition which, if left untreated, is fatal.
Combined with the additional costs associated with providing healthcare to IDPs in emergency settings, health accounts for half of the economic impact of the Central African Republic displacement crisis.
In Somalia, drought alone cost the country 500 million dollars annually between 2017 and 2018, representing almost five percent of the country’s pre-crisis GDP. The country-wide drought lead to 892,000 new displacements in the country in 2017.
As the drought left rural communities unable to cultivate and live off their lands, the highest economic impact is associated to the provision of food assistance to IDPs.
IDMC also found high impacts on housing and infrastructure as the drought drove many Somalis to urban and peri-urban areas in search of new sources of income. However, this further stretched the already limited capacity of municipalities to provide basic services such as water and sanitation.
The city of Mogadishu now hosts more than 600,000 IDPs—one-third of the total figure of IDPs in the East African nation.
“This new research clearly shows the risk internal displacement represents, not only for human rights and security but also for national development,” said Bilak.

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