Tropical Cyclone Idai, which hit the coastline of Mozambique on March 14, caused heavy loss of life and affected more than 600,000 people - a number that could rise after on-ground assessments. Amid continuing efforts to find survivors, two key concerns have come to the fore: the impact on food security, and the broader impact on the Mozambican economy. The UN estimates that more than 500,000ha of crops were destroyed by the cyclone, just before harvest season. Mozambique is a net importer of major grains such as maize, wheat and rice. In a normal season, the country imports about 100,000t of maize, 700,000t of rice and 680,000t of wheat to fulfil its domestic needs. Maize imports are largely transported by land as these are mainly from SA and Zambia. Wheat and rice imports originate from Europe and Asia through Beira's port, the area affected by the cyclone. In the case of rice, the key suppliers are typically Thailand, Pakistan, Vietnam, and China. Vietnam and China are expecting ...

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