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Food Inflation in the GCC Countries (May 2008)

  • Christian Koch
  • Eckart Woertz
  • Samir Ranjan Pradhan
  • Nermina Biberovic
Publisher: Gulf Research Center
Date of Publication: May 2009
Publications Categories: Reports


The GCC countries and the UAE and Qatar in particular have witnessed accelerated inflationratesfor three years now. Besides the dominant rent inflation,foodinflationhasbeenputinthespotlightrecently in the wake of food price hikes on a global scale. There should be no doubt that high food prices are very dangerous for political stability in all directions. That is because food security is a key element of human psychology. When such security is not guaranteed, it tends to exacerbate all sorts of cleavages and contrasts. There are also direct implications for the GCC countries where the demographic situation consists of a large expatriate population and a smaller national population base. In such situations, individuals who are normally tolerant of income or rights differences could begin to revolt and even question the political order. Moreover, it is the rulers who ultimately will be made responsible for the situation, and suspicion and animosity may erupt rapidly and unexpectedly. The issue thus deserves the utmost attention and decisive action.

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