Between January 2007 and April 2008, 37 countries across the globe experienced food riots caused by widespread anger over the rapid rise in food prices (Janin, 2009). Overall, these events revealed the high degree of dependency of many poor countries on global food markets.
Most West African countries are highly dependent on imported food, especially rice. Rice consumption has greatly increased over the last decade driven by changing food preferences in the urban and rural areas, by the rapid urbanization and population growth. West Africa’s rice production has not been able to match growth in demand resulting in a significant increase in imports. With regional rice imports totaling almost 19 percent of world rice imports (FAOSTAT, 2013), West Africa has become a significant player in world rice markets.
Brunelin S. 2015. "Price transmission and asymmetric adjustment: the case of three West African rice markets" Ferdi Note Brève B141, décembre 2015