Written: 2021 | Published: May 11, 2021 | Susanne Jaspars, Youssif El Tayeb

Caught in Transition: food aid in Sudan's changing political economy

Food aid has long been a part of Sudan’s political economy; whether as a form of government budget support, a way of maintaining or attracting political allies, to feed soldiers or deny food to enemies. Powerful actors and institutions have found numerous ways to benefit from food aid or its denial. The 2019 revolution and political transition presents an opportunity for change; for maximising the positive impacts of food aid and for overcoming some of the harms of the past. This is particularly important in the current political, economic and humanitarian crisis, and in an international response in which food aid and food security support is a large component.

This report provides a preliminary analysis of changes in the political economy of food aid since the revolution, and seeks to assist donors, UN, and NGOs to navigate the dilemmas of distributing food aid in Sudan.

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