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Drought hits Central America

Thursday, December 18, 2014


A drought that has swept Central America is turning into a humanitarian crisis for some 2.5 million people in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, said the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

In September this year, the region's Agriculture Ministers agreed to seek a $2-billion cooperation fund to face those challenges.

Salvadoran farmers said they would need at least $100 million to face the sequels of the drought.

More than 80 percent of farmers in eastern El Salvador reported they have lost all of their crops, in what is worst drought since 1977, according to the Salvadoran government.

Nicaraguan fertilizer and agrochemical firms, such as Sagsa Disagro, have reported a drop in their sales of between 10 and 15 percent, while sales of other agrochemicals have plunged 30 percent.

In Honduras and Guatemala, up to 75 per cent of maize and bean crops has been lost and thousands of cattle have died.

Guatemala declared state of emergency in several areas of the country, as did Honduras, whose basic-grain-farmers' association reported a 50 percent loss in crops in the state of Olancho, which supplies 60 percent of the country's grains for domestic consumption.