29 Oct 2014

ACF - Rapid Assessment of Agricultural Livelihoods in Tilkaif, Ninewa

INTRODUCTION

The agricultural system in Iraq is the third contributor to the GDP (circa 8% en 2012) and the second employer of the country in 2012 (around 25% of its labour force). Iraq has 9,000,000 hectares of arable land, 22% of its territory which 60% is actually cultivated. Iraq imports 80% of its food requirements. It also has a high dependence for some basic foods; wheat (50%), rice (81%), milk (67%). The agriculture sector is still a major source of livelihood for the poor and food insecure and is the largest source of rural employment. Disruption of agricultural production is strongly impacting the income of farmers as well as the national economy. Indeed the Iraqi Government normally maintains three to six months’ supply of wheat in its food stocks and is committed to supplying each Iraqi citizen with a monthly 9 kg of subsidized flour (FAO).

Since January 2014, an estimated 1.8 million Iraqi Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) have fled violence and unrest in successive waves. The newly displaced persons are in addition to the over 200,000 IDPs from previous waves of violence since 2003 and over 200,000 refugees from Syria.

The ongoing conflict has resulted in a disruption of the Public Distribution System upon which large numbers of people in Iraq depend. The food security of more than 4,000,000 individuals (not displaced) who rely on the PDS for more than 50 percent of their energy requirements has been compromised as a result. Of this group, approximately 1,500,000 individuals in the lowest 20 percent income group are estimated to have already become highly food insecure and are now in need of emergency food assistance. The remaining vulnerable individuals are at risk of becoming food insecure if the current situation continues.

Due to the ongoing conflict, the crop cycle has been largely interrupted in Anbar, Ninewah, Salah Al-Din and Diyala, as well as South Baghdad and Northern Babil (FAO). Large parts of the wheat production belt lie directly under the control of ISIL and affiliated armed groups. The three Governorates of the Kurdish Region of Iraq have not been directly affected by the conflict but indirectly hosting circa 800,000 IDPs.

The objective of this survey is to look at the impact of the crisis on the agricultural livelihoods of the farmers living in Tilkaif district, Ninewah Province, surveying the performance of the last agricultural season and the perspective for the coming one.

Please find the complete report attached.
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