|Sumario:||From 2006 to 2008 the world was hit by major food price increases. The effects of these were felt worldwide and have been studied in several countries. The objective of this dissertation is to assess the specific impacts on urban households in Colombia and to quantify their welfare losses as well as the aggregate city poverty increases. Using total expenditures as a measure of household welfare, the study employs household survey information combined with disaggregated price data for the 13 main capital cities and 13 basic food commodities to address the proposed objectives. The analysis starts with the nominal adjustment of the poverty line caused by the increase in the basic consumption basket and then simulates short and medium term impacts of the price surge. These are measured in terms of monetary expenditure at the household level and using poverty headcount rate and poverty gap indicators at the aggregate level.
The medium term increase in poverty is around 3%, both in the extreme and overall cases. However sub-national results vary significantly from these averages, being Barranquilla the city most affected. In addition, households with lower initial welfare and educational level, as well as female headed ones seem to be hit the hardest. These results could be applied to develop more efficiently targeted programmes directed to protect household entitlements towards a food price crisis. They could also be used to establish benefit levels or expansion directions of existing conditional cash transfer programmes that intend to improve nutritional and poverty conditions in Colombia. Finally the results become even more relevant considering the likely recurrence of events like these in the near future.|