Paris (AFP) - Pakistan is placed among the countries at the 'extreme risk of food shortages with an overall ranking of 11 among the 148 countries studied, with most of sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia are facing extreme or high risk of food shortages, reported AFP on Monday. The two other most populous South Asian countries India and Bangladesh are ranked as 25th and 20th for facing 'high risk. India may be one of the worlds key emerging economies, but it is finding itself under increasing pressure from food security issues, said a study by the study by Maplecroft, a Britain-based firm that provides risk intelligence for businesses. Two-thirds of Indias 1.1 billion people depend on farming as their main income source. But acreage of land under cultivation has dropped by more than a fifth since August last year, due to dwindling water resources, deforestation and an uneven rainy season in July this year. The Indian government has said it will soon publish its own National Food Security Act to insure adequate distribution of food. But the Indian government will need to overcome challenges to distribution as well as financing the subsidies, said Fiona Place, a senior risk analyst at Maplecroft. The report says the United States is least at risk followed by France, Canada, Germany and the Czech Republic, according to the Food Security Risk Index, calculated from dozens of variables that determine a countrys capacity to feed its people. Poverty is a major source of food vulnerability but not the only one, it warns. Food security is also affected by agricultural development, trade flows, foreign aid as well as government policies on nutrition, said Alyson Warhurst, a professor at Warwick Business School in central England and co-director of Maplecroft. Added to these are the impacts of population growth and climate change, she told AFP. The five countries topping the risk list - Angola, Haiti, Mozambique, Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo - are all mired in poverty, but other factors also boost vulnerability. Nearly three decades of civil war in Angola has displaced millions and wreaked havoc on agricultural infrastructure. DR Congo and Burundi have also been ravaged by conflict, along with corruption and poor governance. Mozambique is, in addition, buffeted by weather-related natural disasters, while politically unstable Haiti depends on foreign aid for nearly half of its food needs. China, Russia and Brazil - the other three so-called BRIC major emerging economies - all face medium risk, ranking between 100 and 114 on the index. In China, food self-sufficiency and avoiding price and supply shocks have long been national policy. In addition, Beijing has in recent years bought huge tracts of arable land in Africa to grow staple crops for consumption back home. The United States and France rank highest in food security in large measure due to their status as the worlds top two exporters of cereals, the study reported. Food stress jumped toward the top of the global agenda after soaring commodity prices in 2007 and 2008 sparked riots in 30 countries, including many tottering on the brink of severe shortages or widespread hunger. The World Bank estimates that food inflation during that period pushed an additional 100 million people into deep poverty, on top of a billion that were already scraping by on less than a dollar a day.