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Humanitarian disaster threatens Yemen due to continued detention of oil derivative ships

Humanitarian disaster threatens Yemen due to continued detention of oil derivative ships

[17/September/2020]

SANAA, Sep. 17 (Saba) - An economic working paper has warned of a humanitarian catastrophe threatening more than 26 million Yemenis due to the continued detention of oil derivative ships by Saudi-led aggression coalition countries.

The working paper prepared by the legal advisor at the Ministry of Human Rights, Hamid Yahya Al-Rafiq, confirmed that Yemen is currently witnessing one of the highest rates of chronic malnutrition in the world as a result of the blockade practiced by the aggression coalition countries through imposing arbitrary restrictions on imports of the basic requirements for the continuation of life in terms of oil derivatives, food and medicine.

The working paper indicated that the aggression coalition’s arbitrary practices by preventing the entry of oil derivative ships loaded with foodstuffs, medicines, supplies, medical equipment, oil derivatives and domestic gas reflects the level of degeneration reached by the aggression countries.

 

Service Sectors:

 

The economic paper stated that the continued holding of oil derivative ships for long periods is a major reason for the retreat of many basic service sectors from providing services to citizens, especially the health sector, as a number of hospitals and health centers indeed stopped providing services to patients due to the lack of oil derivatives.

The seizure of ships also led to a crisis of oil products, the effects of which were reflected in the lives of citizens, the economic, social and living conditions and food security in the country, and it left consequences, whose indicators will be seen in the widening poverty and unemployment rate, high prices, and difficulty in accessing basic services, as well as the increasing need for food security.

 

Economic Imbalances:

 

The paper considered the succession and recurrence of the oil derivatives crisis as one of the imbalances that the economy suffers from, the repercussions of which are reflected in the increase in Yemenis' suffering and bitterness of livelihood from time to time, and this has negative impact on various fixed and temporary-income segments.

It indicated that the average of fuel imports amounted to 157,000 tons per month during the period from January 2018 to November 2019, as they contributed to covering about 29 percent of the domestic demand on average during the same period, while the demand gap is estimated at 71 percent, equivalent to 386,000 tons per month on average.

The working paper dealt with the effects and repercussions of the aggression coalition’s detention of oil derivative ships on the deteriorating economic situation in the country. It explained that 50 percent of the economic movement has stopped in general and in particular in the industrial, agricultural, and commercial sectors, and internal transport between cities.

 

Unemployment and Transportation Fees:

 

The economic working paper stated that the consequences of the crisis have affected workers in the various sectors, and its repercussions included the increase in the unemployment rate and the registration of new unemployed persons.

The continued holding of fuel ships also led to a stifling crisis in the means of transportation, as the fares of transportation within the governorates increased by between 76 and 150 percent, while the wages of local transport between most governorates increased by 90 to 120 percent, compared to the pre-crisis period, and heavy transport wages increased on average by rates range from 71 to 160 percent.

 

Prices of Food and Medicine Commodities:

 

With regard to the impact of the detention of fuel ships on the prices of food commodities, the paper mentioned that the coincidence of monthly changes average in the prices of fuels (diesel and benzene) with the change average in the prices of basic food commodities (wheat, flour, sugar, rice and oil) during the period from January to November 2019 led to an increase in the prices of basic food commodities, which made the most needy and low-income groups more vulnerable to food insecurity.

Regarding the effects on medicine prices, the repercussions of the oil derivatives crisis were more severe, and it is the most difficult problem facing the population, especially in remote areas that require travel to cities to obtain medicines, which makes citizens face both issues due to the high cost of transportation and drug prices.

 

Agricultural Production:

 

On the agricultural sector, the economic paper confirmed that two-thirds of the agricultural sector in Yemen was affected by the holding of oil derivative ships, in addition to damage to agricultural crops and more than 1.2 million agricultural holders in several governorates.

 

According to estimates, one farmer needs an average of about 2,000 liters of fuel to irrigate agriculture lands, and most of the vegetable, fruit and grain farmers in Yemen depend on ground water, as the cultivated area that depends on well water is estimated at about 36 percent, and the stoppage of many pumps caused crops damage.

 

The repercussions of the fuel crisis in the local markets caused an increase in the cost of agricultural production, which is reflected in the high prices of products such as vegetables and fruits, even grains, and this is matched by deterioration in the purchasing power of citizens.

 

Electricity and Energy Service:

 

In the field of electricity, the working paper mentioned that most governorates are living in catastrophic situations as a result of the oil derivatives crisis, fuel shortage and high prices. This negatively affected the level of electricity generation using fuel, which decreased by 77 percent in 2015. In the same period, night lighting emissions in Yemen decreased by two-thirds.

The percentage of citizens who do not have access to electricity is 90 percent of the total population. The oil derivatives crisis leads to power outages for long periods per day, and power cuts periods have reached six hours compared to an hour and a half of power delivery in some governorates.

 

Private Sector:

 

Regarding the impact of the oil derivatives crisis on the private sector (both industrial and service sectors), which manages most of the economic activities in Yemen to contribute to about 90 percent of the industrial and service production and the transport and agricultural sectors, the economic paper stated that estimates indicate that half of the factories in Yemen have stopped. As a result, more than 980,000 workers lost their livelihoods.

The paper pointed out that the oil derivatives crisis leads to an increase in the costs of industrial production, including its areas and activities, and subsequently causes a decrease in the production of industrial and service establishments. When the factories temporarily suspend their activities during the oil derivatives crisis, this leads to low productivity and private sector revenues and reduces the private sector's ability to expand and provide employment opportunities.

 

Water Sector:

 

In the field of water, the fuel crisis has reflected on the water prices, which hike dramatically, and the price of the load of a water truck rose by varying rates range between 100 and 300 percent.

 

The legal advisor mentioned, in the paper, that humanitarian work has also been affected by the detention of oil derivative ships, as relief and humanitarian organizations suffer greatly from the lack of necessary fuel, which makes it difficult for them to transport aid to the facilities and areas that they support and provide life-saving assistance, in addition to suspending support for malnourished children and reducing food and water distribution.

 

Food Security:

 

Regarding the implications for food security and malnutrition, the oil derivatives crisis represents the worst possible case that increases the risk of famine, exacerbates the already severe levels of acute food insecurity, and leads to more basic food commodity price, according to an analysis data conducted by the Famine Early Warning Network in November 2019.

 

The data indicated that more than 12 million people face a large deficit in food consumption.

 

The paper concluded that the percentage of the population suffering from food insecurity in Yemen increased to about 70 percent in 2019, with an increase of 20 percentage points compared to the results of the interim classification analysis in 2016.

 

The economic paper held the aggression coalition countries and the United Nations fully responsible for the humanitarian catastrophe that threatens the Yemeni people and the conditions that will result from the continuation of the aggression coalition to hold ships of fuel, food and pharmaceutical products.

 

 

Translated by BA


resource : Saba

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