According to WFP spokesperson Rasha Abou Dargham, food prices in Lebanon have increased 16 times since October 2019, when the current financial crisis first began. Families’ incomes, she says, are not sufficient to cover the rapidly rising prices for food and other basic necessities.
Lebanon’s caretaker prime minister and the United Nations World Food Program said Tuesday that they have increased their food assistance to the beleaguered country, feeding one-third of the stricken population.
According to reports, Lebanon’s economy and finance have seen the worst crisis in modern history, resulting in 75% of the population falling into poverty since late 2019. The Lebanese pound has lost over 90% of its value against the U.S. dollar, contributing to some of the world’s highest food price inflation rates.
Over 1 million Syrian refugees have fled to Lebanon in the past decade, adding up to around 6 million residents.
The WFP used to provide $700 million in food assistance to Lebanon every year, and the budget was raised to $1.3 billion in 2022. Now, the organization has committed $5.4 billion for the next three years, increasing its annual food assistance budget by $500 million.
The WFP will be able to provide sustenance to about 500,000 Lebanese and Syrian refugees, equally divided, as a result of the new budget.
According to WFP spokesperson Rasha Abou Dargham, food prices in Lebanon have risen 16 times since October 2019, when the current economic crisis began. Due to skyrocketing food and other basic needs prices, families’ incomes are insufficient to keep up.