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How Effective are WTO Disciplines on Domestic Support and Market Access for Agriculture?


  • David Blandford
  • Ivar Gaasland
  • Roberto Garcia
  • Erling Vårdal


A new round of trade negotiations through the World Trade Organization (WTO) was launched in 2001. One of the major aims of the Doha Development Round is to reduce agricultural protection and impose greater discipline on domestic agricultural subsidies, particularly those that are the most trade distorting. In this article, we examine whether the proposed WTO modalities for agriculture will actually achieve this aim in Norway, which ranks among the top providers of government assistance for agriculture. Norway has a complex system of farm subsidies buttressed by substantial import protection. The extent to which its agricultural support policies will have to change in response to new WTO disciplines provides an important indication of how successful these are likely to be. We find that Norway will probably be able to sustain its current agricultural activity and production levels while staying within the new WTO rules. Following recent practice in some other WTO members, Norway will be able to reduce its notified support without making real changes in some of its programmes. However, there will have to be a shift from market price support, which is paid for by consumers through higher food prices, to budgetary support paid by taxpayers. This could generate increased domestic pressure for policy reform.

Suggested Citation

  • David Blandford & Ivar Gaasland & Roberto Garcia & Erling Vårdal, 2010. "How Effective are WTO Disciplines on Domestic Support and Market Access for Agriculture?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 33(11), pages 1470-1485, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:worlde:v:33:y:2010:i:11:p:1470-1485

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gaasland, Ivar & Garcia, Robert & Vardal, Erling, 2008. "Norway: Shadow WTO agricultural domestic support notifications," IFPRI discussion papers 812, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    2. Godo, Yoshihisa & Takahashi, Daisuke, 2008. "Japan: Shadow WTO Agricultural Domestic Support Notifications," IFPRI discussion papers 822, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
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    Cited by:

    1. Blandford, David & Gaasland, Ivar & Vårdal, Erling, 2014. "GHG abatement welfare cost curves for Norwegian agriculture," 88th Annual Conference, April 9-11, 2014, AgroParisTech, Paris, France 169734, Agricultural Economics Society.
    2. Blandford, David & Gaasland, Ivar & Vardal Erling, 2015. "GHG abatement welfare cost curves for Norwegian agriculture," 2015 Conference, August 9-14, 2015, Milan, Italy 211922, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. Blandford, David & Gaasland, Ivar & Hassapoyannes, Katharina & Vardal, Erling, 2015. "Policy options for GHG mitigation under autarky: a conceptual and empirical analysis for Norway," 89th Annual Conference, April 13-15, 2015, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 204211, Agricultural Economics Society.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C69 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Other
    • F53 - International Economics - - International Relations, National Security, and International Political Economy - - - International Agreements and Observance; International Organizations
    • Q17 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agriculture in International Trade
    • Q18 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Policy; Food Policy


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