The Russia – Ukraine war is still raging. At this stage it is too soon to measure the war’s full impact on Africa, it is clear that the repercussions will be multidimensional. For now, African countries that are heavily dependent on food and energy imports from Russia are particularly vulnerable to economic shocks as a result of the crisis. Additionally, rising fertilizer costs further compound these increasing food prices.
According to the U.N., Russia is the highest exporter of nitrogen fertilizer and the second-highest exporter of phosphorous and potassium fertilizer globally. African countries that produce fuel and gas such as Algeria, Angola, Cameroon, Republic of Congo, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Libya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan, and Tanzania should be benefiting from the resulting increase of prices. Given the elevated levels of socioeconomic stress following the COVID-19 crisis and unfolding impacts of climate change, the Russia – Ukraine war is enough to trigger collapse – debt distress, food shortages, domestic production costs increase or blackouts.