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Government Of Zimbabwe Receives $1, 755, 890 From ARC Ins. Ltd To Combat Drought Risk Amidst COVID19 Pandemic

 The agriculture sector in Zimbabwe contributes about 20% to the GDP and is a key foreign currency earner. 70% of the population is dependent on rainfed-agriculture for food security and rural economic activities. From 2000 to 2018, Zimbabwe has suffered from 15 drought incidences that have been classified as either severe-extreme, moderate or mild and as national, regional and localised on a geo-spatial scale. In that period, 6 severe - extreme droughts have been recorded and affecting between 2.5 – 7 million. The worst of these drought disasters have been the 2015/16 and 2018/19 seasons, which have seen Government spending over US220m over and above its usual Social Safety Net schemes to provide food relief to vulnerable populations. Faced with 2 previous droughts, the drought of 2019/20 season has compounded vulnerability in the country. Approximately 4.5 million people are reported to be need of food relief aid during the current consumption year. Government has already launched an appeal together with its partners for external assistance. COVID 9 has also compounded the current drought related challenges.


Over and above droughts, Zimbabwe is also increasingly being affected by floods and tropical storms especially those emanating from the Mozambique channel. Of note are the floods of the previous 3 season, with the major ones emanating from Cyclone in Idai in March 2019.

Droughts are known to cause food and nutrition insecurity, decrease in hydropower among other direct and indirect several socio-economic impacts. In most recent times the droughts of 2018/19, 2015/16 seasons affected approximately 5.5m and 4m people respectively. Government spends approximately over US200m in relief food purchases only outside of the National Budgeting systems.

The ARC programme in Zimbabwe ultimately aims at strengthening existing and government led disaster risk management and financing systems in-country, not just for drought but also for extreme rainfall, flooding, disease outbreaks and epidemics and also tropical cyclones, in the context of climate change.


• Country Engagement

Zimbabwe has been a member of the African Risk Capacity (ARC) since its inception in 2012. The ARC Capacity Building programme has been implemented in Zimbabwe since 2013, through a MoU agreed to in February 2013 and amended in February 2016. The programme is, implemented through 2-year Programme of Work action plans and budgets provide for by both ARC and Government in-kind.

The ARC focal point is the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development (MoFED) and Permanent Secretary, Mr. George Guvamatanga supervises the programme. Coordination and implementation is by the Department of Financial and Capital Markets, in MoFED. Programme implementation is through a vibrant and solid Technical Working Group (TWG), composed of different Ministries, Departments and Agencies. Membership of the TWG is mainly drawn from already existing platforms including the Civil Protection Committee and Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee membership. Development partners including the UN WFP among others are also part of the TWG and play an important role in technical review and development of the TWG outputs.

Key responsibilities of the TWG are to customise the Africa RiskView drought modelling software, develop a Operational Plan for early response in the case of a ARC payout, and determining risk Transfer Parameters (RTPs). In November 2019, Zimbabwe joined the ARC drought insurance risk pool VI, covering the 2019/20 cropping season through 2 policies; (i) a Government Policy funded by National Treasury; and (ii) a Replica Policy through the UN WFP, funded by the KfW. In February 2019, the Zimbabwe Africa Disaster Risk Financing (ADRiFi) programme was approved by the AFDB Board of Directors. The ADRiFi is a collaborative programme between the ARC and the AFDB which aims to; (i) strengthen disaster risk financing and analytics capacity, and; (ii) sustained participation in ARC insurance risk pools through premium financing support. The ADRiFi programme in Zimbabwe is set to commence in June 2020 focusing on capacity building, related hardware and software acquisition, and strengthening of centralised gender, monitoring and evaluation of disaster responses in Zimbabwe.


• Payout information

The Africa RiskView drought modelling software depicts an overall bad performance of the 2019/20 rainfall season in most parts of the country, and estimates number of people affected at 4.65 million.
As such this has triggered a payout of about $1,465,602 and $290,288 for Government of Zimbabwe and UN WFP respectively, to assist about 500,000 beneficiaries who were forecasted to be susceptible to drought this year. The payout will form part of the broader Government drought response plan that has been compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic.




Tags:Government Of Zimbabwe Receives $1, 755, 890 From ARC Ins. Ltd To Combat Drought Risk Amidst COVID19 Pandemic
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