The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region is the largest grain importing region in the world. Severe constraints on arable land and water, coupled with a growing population and rising incomes, make the region inherently dependent on imports to meet rising demand for food, particularly cereals.
These imports became exorbitantly expensive in recent years as world market prices for cereals were high and erratic. As a result, MENA countries, as well as food importing countries throughout the world, have placed a new premium on designing strategies for improving food security by reducing the risks that accompany being a food importing nation.
This paper is meant to be an overview of strategies available to policy makers in the region in order to improve food security under the assumption of continued import dependence.