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Reducing distortions to agricultural incentives : progress, pitfalls, and prospects

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  • Anderson, Kym

Abstract

Most of the world's poorest people depend on farming for their livelihood. Earnings from farming in low-income countries are depressed partly due to a pro-urban bias in own-country policies, and partly because richer countries (including some developing countries) favor their farmers with import barriers and subsidies. Both sets of policies reduce national and global economic growth and add to inequality and poverty in developing countries. Acknowledgement of that since the 1980s has given rise to greater pressures for reform, both internal and external. Over the past two decades numerous developing country governments have reduced their sectoral and trade policy distortions, while many high-income countries continue with protectionist policies that harm developing country exports of farm products. Recent research suggests that the agricultural protectionist policies of high-income countries reduce welfare in many developing countries. Most of those studies also suggest that full global liberalization of merchandise trade would raise value added in agriculture in developing country regions, and that much of the benefit from global reform would come not just from reform in high-income countries but also from liberalization among developing countries, including in many cases own-country reform. These findings raise three key questions that are addressed in this paper: To what extent have the reforms of the past two decades succeeded in reducing distortions to agricultural incentives? Do current policy distortions still discriminate against farmers in low-income countries? And what are the prospects for further reform in the next decade or so?

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  • Anderson, Kym, 2006. "Reducing distortions to agricultural incentives : progress, pitfalls, and prospects," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4092, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4092
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    Cited by:

    1. Agnieszka Sapa & Agnieszka Baer-Nawrocka, 2014. "Konwergencja wydajności pracy w rolnictwie a intensywność handlu rolno-żywnościowego w amerykańskich ugrupowaniach handlowych," Gospodarka Narodowa. The Polish Journal of Economics, Warsaw School of Economics, issue 3, pages 111-131.
    2. Rainer Klump & César Miralles Cabrera, 2008. "Biased Technological Change in Agriculture: The Hayami-Ruttan Hypothesis Revisited," DEGIT Conference Papers c013_016, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
    3. Henning Tarp Jensen & Sherman Robinson & Finn Tarp, 2010. "Measuring Agricultural Policy Bias: General Equilibrium Analysis of Fifteen Developing Countries," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 92(4), pages 1136-1148.
    4. Hawkes, Corinna & Friel, Sharon & Lobstein, Tim & Lang, Tim, 2012. "Linking agricultural policies with obesity and noncommunicable diseases: A new perspective for a globalising world," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 343-353.
    5. McCalla, Alex F., 2007. "Implications of WTO Developments for Market Integration," 2007 NAAMIC Workshop IV: Contemporary Drivers of Integration 163900, North American Agrifood Market Integration Consortium (NAAMIC).
    6. Lars Brink, 2009. "WTO Constraints on Domestic Support in Agriculture: Past and Future," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 57(1), pages 1-21, March.
    7. Acharya, Sanjaya, 2011. "Making unilateral trade liberalisation beneficial to the poor," Socio-Economic Planning Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 60-71, June.
    8. Johan F.M. Swinnen & Anneleen Vandeplas & Miet Maertens, 2009. "Liberalization with Endogenous Institutions: A Comparative Analysis of Agricultural Reform in Africa, Asia, and Europe," LICOS Discussion Papers 23309, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.

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    Economic Theory&Research; Agribusiness; Free Trade; Rural Development Knowledge&Information Systems; Achieving Shared Growth;
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