Trade and Food Security Policy in Tanzania
Sheila Kiratu, Lutz Märker, Adam Mwakolobo
This paper investigates the impact of the 2007-08 international food crisis on Tanzania and assesses the extent to which both the country's long-term and short-term policies helped mitigate the effects of the crisis on its society and economy. Using household-level data from a budget survey, we estimate that 0.5-1 per cent of the population, mostly clustered in urban regions, was driven into poverty by the crisis, as measured by the national poverty line, rendering the crisis less severe than in many other countries. There is no clear evidence that short-term policies helped alleviate these effects, whereas some success can be attributed to Tanzania's economic reforms since the early 2000s, which enabled it to export some of its food to its neighbouring countries. A major challenge, however, remains that of increasing productivity and stabilizing output growth.