India played a poor hand in Geneva despite raising important issues on how domestic support should be measured under WTO rules
Developing countries are now the dynamic motor behind the growth in global agrifood trade.
The intellectual case for the G-33 public stock-holding proposal for the Bali mini-package is weak and the proposal itself has the potential to lead to damaging trade distortions, not least for other developing countries.
New working paper examines the stalled Doha Round negotiations in agriculture and examines the options facing the multilateral trading system.
A summary of the agricultural issues being discussed as part of the Bali mini-package in the Doha Development Round.
Another failure at Bali would surely bring the stuttering Doha Round to an end, even if no WTO member wants to be the first to pronounce it dead. But what should take its place?
Latest WTO review of EU trade policy shows marginal fall in average MFN applied tariffs but there are still many tariff peaks.
The latest EU notification of domestic support to the WTO contains no surprises, and documents the continuing downward trend in amber box support in the EU total.
While levels of agricultural support and protection have been falling in OECD countries, agricultural support in a number of (but not all) emerging economies has been increasing. Rising agricultural support in emerging economies may lead to these countries breaching their WTO commitments, and this trend will raise difficult questions about the reasonableness and fairness of these commitments.
New study suggests the EU along with China would be the major winner from a conclusion of the Doha Round negotiations, with limited impacts expected for EU agriculture.
There is now a real prospect that Russia will gain membership of the WTO before year end, which would bring benefits for the EU agri-food sector.
Decoupling means EU has plenty of headroom if a WTO agreement to cap trade-distorting farm subsidies is reached
The CAP is still hurting developing countries, say the UN and the OECD. But will European development NGOs engage in the battle over the future of the CAP?
A new study shows that Europeans won’t go hungry without the CAP
CAP subsidies as reported to the WTO reached the highest level in ten years in 2006/07 at over €90 billion.
The European Food Declaration calls for a new agriculture policy based around ‘food sovereignty’.
When the negotiators in the Uruguay Round of the GATT introduced the concept of the ‘green box’ – farm support measures that are minimally or non-trade distorting and therefore exempt from any limits – few would have foreseen that within 15 years, the bulk of farm support in the developed world would be in the [...]
Pascal Lamy, the WTO Director-General, provided an end-of-term report on the status of the Doha Round trade negotiations at the July meeting of the Trade Negotiations Committee before delegates left for their August break. This is what he had to say about the agricultural negotiations. As you know, work in agriculture is continuing, particularly in [...]
Full details at the WTO’s website. WTO Director General Pascal Lamy said: “These revised texts set the stage for a decisive moment in the Doha round. Ministers and other senior officials will soon arrive for intensive negotiations the week of 21 July. They need negotiating documents which are clear and precise as they consider the [...]
One of the advances made when Franz Fischler was farm commissioner was to recognise farm animals as sentient beings rather than agricultural products. This provided a basis for treating animal welfare as one of the planks of multifunctionality. However, a vet who is an animal welfare expert suggested in a talk (under Chatham House rules) [...]
Having previously run a highly visible campaign threatening to derail the imminent referendum on the EU’s Lisbon Treaty on account of the EU’s negotiating position in the WTO, the Irish Farmers Association has fallen back into line with it’s longstanding position of support for Irish membership of the EU. As previously noted, Ireland does spectacularly [...]
The Republic of Ireland will hold a referendum on ratification of the EU’s Lisbon Treaty on 12 June 2008. The Irish Farmers Association is urging a No vote, on the grounds that the EU’s push towards more open world markets in agriculture could expose them to competition from overseas, notably from Latin America. Ireland gets [...]
The timing, if not the chicken, is delicious. On the same day (and in the same newspaper!) that German farms minister Horst Seehofer called for the EU to export its standards of environmental, animal welfare and food production regulations to China and India, it has been revealed that member state governments have been covering up [...]
The WTO negotiations have become a live issue in Irish politics because Ireland is the only EU country which will hold a referendum to ratify the Lisbon Treaty, and the campaign provides an opportunity for interest groups to maximise their bargaining strength. For example, farm groups who are traditionally pro-EU in referendum votes have threatened [...]
Roger Waite is a long-standing member of the Brussels agricultural press pack and he will be giving a podcast round-up of the monthly Agriculture Council meetings, when farm ministers from all 27 EU member states met to decide the future of EU agriculture and rural development policy. In this month’s meeting, EU farm ministers debated [...]
The Chair of the agricultural negotiations at the WTO, Crawford Falconer, released his latest version of the draft modalities for an agricultural agreement on Friday last 8 February. This is the culmination of a series of intensive meetings since early January among a representative group of some 37 WTO members. Although there are still many [...]
International trade negotiations have been the most effective driver of CAP reform for over fiften years. I haven’t commented on progress in the Doha Round for some time because prospects have looked so bleak since the collapse of the G-4 talks at Potsdam. But there does seem to be a glimmer of hope.
After Nicholas Sarkozy appeared to indicate that it was ‘business as usual’ in French agricultural policy, the appointment of Christine Lagarde as farm minister gives a ray of hope. Named as the 30th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes in 2006, she was formerly trade minister.
Bilateral discussions have continued between the key participants in the Doha Round farm trade talks, most recently in London, but although clarification of the issues and what might be possible continues, there has been little real progress. Key participants in Geneva have described the overall mood as one of ‘suspended pessimism’.
Talks on the resumption of the stalled Doha Round took place in the margins of the World Economic Forum at Davos, Switzerland during the past week, but many hurdles remain to be overcome before an acceptable farm trade deal can be sketched out. Such …
An attempt by President Bush and Commission President Barosso to re-start the stalled Doha Round trade talks may not succeed in the face of rising protectionist sentiment in the new Congress and intransigence over subsidies in the EU. Meeting in Wash…
A report commissioned by the Indian Department of Commerce and carried out by UNCTAD’s Indian team challenges the EU’s argument that decoupled aid payments have only a minimal trade distorting effect. According to the researchers’ model, EU farm exports would fall by a massive 45 per cent if Green Box subsidies were removed and production [...]