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Trade Dimensions of Food Security

Listed author(s):
  • Jonathan Brooks

    (OECD)

  • Alan Matthews

    (Trinity College Dublin)

This report examines the different channels through which trade openness (and reforms to achieve it) can affect a country’s food security. The overall conclusion is that trade openness has a positive net impact on food security, although specific constituencies, including some poor households, could see their immediate food security threatened by the withdrawal of trade protection. The challenge for policymakers is to design flanking policies which enable countries to reap aggregate gains yet mitigate specific losses. Those policies include social protection and the provision of risk management tools, allied with investments in productivity so that average incomes rise to the extent that any adverse shock to incomes is unlikely to jeopardise food security. Developing countries are increasingly able to deploy such targeted instruments. Lessons are also being learned with respect to the political economy of trade reform, such that changes can be introduced in a way that minimises adjustment stresses and helps build the consensus needed to lock in the benefits of trade policy reform.

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/5js65xn790nv-en
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Paper provided by OECD Publishing in its series OECD Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Papers with number 77.

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Date of creation: 23 Feb 2015
Handle: RePEc:oec:agraaa:77-en
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