The COVID-19 pandemic has become the defining global health crisis worldwide. It has also greatly affected African livelihoods, with particular effects felt in agricultural-inputs delivery, production systems, food security and agricultural livelihoods.

Ghana: Ghana is largely an import-driven economy; the persistence of COVID-19 is likely to have a substantial adverse effect on the country’s international trade and reserves. Restrictions on peoples’ movements in a partial lockdown have led to disruptions in transportation, the supply chain in agriculture and lower demand in agricultural and agribusiness activities.

Malawi: With COVID-19 spreading in Malawi, massive consequences to food security and rural livelihoods are feared; this is with regards to the massive role agriculture plays in support and development of the livelihoods of many Malawians and its significant contribution towards Malawi’s GDP.

Mozambique: Due to the quarantine measures and restrictions put in place, various agricultural activities have been put on hold. Trade and work within the country have also been restricted. As such,  income-earning opportunities for thousands of AgriSMEs and farming communities have been negatively affected.

Tanzania: Even though Tanzania did not close its borders, it still relies heavily on the importation of agricultural inputs from Asia and Europe. Lockdowns implemented overseas have had an impact on the availability and price of agricultural inputs in the local market. There, AgriSMEs have been affected in that there is low purchasing power, agricultural inputs are unavailable, and scepticism has developed regarding doing farming activities during this pandemic.

Uganda: Despite the continuation of certain activities, like the AgriSMEs continuing to sell the inputs, the total lockdown has still affected the businesses. There are very few farmers going to purchase inputs since the most-used means of transport “bodaboda” was banned during this period. The lockdown also means there is a restriction in the movement of agricultural inputs and outputs from the source to customer/markets.

COVID-19 Impact on Agri SMEs