Thank you for contacting me about global food insecurity.
Adequate food and nutrition are basic human needs. It is a deeply regrettable fact that for so many on our planet these needs remain unmet – particularly in the conflict-affected regions of Africa where millions suffer acute food insecurity and even famine. This was true before the Covid-19 pandemic and the situation has only worsened since.
In responding to the increased risk of famine, caused in part by Covid-19, the former Foreign Secretary launched a ‘Call to Action’ last September which has since resulted in an additional £180 million in extra humanitarian support being provided to more than seven million of the most at-risk people in developing countries, mostly in Africa. This is helping to alleviate extreme hunger and avert famine, and Nick Dyer was appointed as the UK's Special Envoy for Famine Prevention and Humanitarian Affairs in the same month in order to drive forward this important agenda.
More generally, tackling famine and humanitarian crises is a priority of the UK's G7 Presidency. Under our impetus, G7 leaders this year agreed a Famine Prevention Compact which, alongside other policies, commits to the provision of $7 billion in humanitarian assistance to the 42 most food insecure countries (protecting approximately 34 million people) in 2021 alone.
Finally, I know that the Foreign Office has been working closely with the Government of Japan to make sure the 2021 Tokyo Nutrition for Growth Summit generates meaningful action by governments, donors, businesses, the UN and civil society, and I will ensure that my Ministerial colleagues are aware of the points you have raised ahead of this Summit.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me about this issue.
Sally-Ann Hart MP