Tajikistan reportedly tops Central Asia’s nations in the number of undernourished people.

This year’s State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) report says the number of people in Tajikistan affected by malnutrition is 2,600,000, which is more than one-third of the country’s population.

The SOFI report, published by five UN agencies, gives updated estimates of the number and proportion of hungry people on the planet and includes data at global, regional, and national levels. It stresses that conflicts, climate change and economic shocks are the major factors contributing to the rise of global hunger, affecting 815 million people worldwide.

In Tajikistan, the prevalence of undernourishment reportedly decreased from 41.5% to 30.1% during the period 2004-2016, while the number of people affected has slightly decreased from 2.8 to 2.6 million.

Recall, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and the United Nations International Organization for Migration (IOM) on October 17 this year held an event in the Tajik city of Nurek to celebrate World Food Day.  

The event entitled “Change the Future of Migration: Invest in Food Security and Rural Development” was attended by governmental counterparts, ambassadors, donors, partners and media representatives. It highlighted the link between food security, migration and rural development through short dramas, cookery and poster-drawing competitions for children, and quizzes around the World Food Day theme.  It also emphasized how migration can increase the workforce of host communities and bring new skills, knowledge and money to the migrants’ home communities.

Speaking at the event, WFP Country Director in Tajikistan Paolo Mattei noted that undernourishment costs Tajikistan US$41 million annually.