#EMBA27 Impact of the Russia-Ukraine War on Africa

Babajide Bola Written by Bola Babajide · 1 min read >

The crisis between Russia and Ukraine may seem trivial to people in Lagos, Johannesburg, and Nairobi. Those with a basic understanding of global economics may be able to comprehend the interconnectedness and interdependence of nations. Surprisingly, the war’s developments show that the entire world is on fire. Russia’s numerous sanctions harm Nigeria in a variety of ways. For example, we buy durum wheat from Russia and Ukraine. Durum wheat is used to make bread, noodles, pasta, semolina, pizza dough, pastries, and other staple foods. How will we survive without bread, croissants, and the rest of our favorite wheat-based foods? The war will have a negative impact on Nigeria’s and the rest of the world’s food and commodity supply chains.

Nigeria would suffer economic and societal consequences because of the disruption in the supply chain. Most Nigerians, including the elite and upper classes, are fed up with the long lines at our fuel stations. Due to the pre-existing epileptic power supply, business activities have reduced, personnel are less efficient, and power outages are becoming more common. Long gasoline lines have been in place for several weeks as a result of the battle. Ships transporting refined petroleum products are being delayed at sea due to ongoing attacks in the region. The resulting scarcity of petroleum products caused significant socioeconomic consequences. Inflation will crystallize in the prices of everyday goods, food crops, logistics, transportation, and other factors.

Wheat and its derivatives account for one-third of East Africa’s cereal consumption. Djibouti, Eritrea, and Sudan are the top wheat consumers, with imports meeting 84 percent of demand. Most of its wheat comes from Russia and Ukraine. If the Russian invasion persists, Africa will reportedly have to prepare to deal with food shortages and loss of employment income for the commodity traders. Crops, logistics, and transportation are a few of the impacted areas.

Kenya exports spices, coffee, vegetables, flowers, and fruits to Russia. With the exclusion of Russian banks from the international SWIFT payment system, this vital source of foreign exchange has been halted. Kenyan exporters have found it impossible to sell to Russia because of this. Kenya’s foreign exchange reserves are dwindling as a result of the war.

Russia is estimated to supply 20% of the world’s potash supply, and potash is a key ingredient in the production of fertilizers. Ghana and other African countries import potash from Russia. The ongoing crisis will make farm produce more expensive. Potash prices will rise due to reduced supply while demand remains the same. Food price inflation will hit Africa due to the Russian invasion.

The effects of the war have spread across Africa, disrupting global supply chains, commodity prices, and energy exports. How will poor Africans deal with the situation? How will energy scarcity and rising commodity prices affect small businesses and start-ups? Can African leaders implement a viable strategy to support their low-income citizens? Time will determine the extent to which this political event will affect 1.2 billion Africans. Fate will show how we manage the looming food crisis. Africa will continue to remain in our prayers as we also hope that the conflict will reach a truce soon.

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