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Agricultural trade : what matters in the Doha round ?

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  • Laborde, David
  • Martin, Will

Abstract

This survey concludes that including agriculture in the Doha Agenda negotiations was important both economically and politically, although the political resistance to reform is particularly strong in this sector. While agriculture accounts for less than 10 percent of merchandise trade, high and variable agricultural distortions appear to cause the majority of the cost of distortions to global merchandise trade. Within agriculture, most of the costs appear to arise from trade barriers levied on imports since these barriers tend to be high, variable across time and over products, and are levied by a wide range of countries. The negotiations faced a need for balance between discipline in reducing tariffs and hence creating the market access gains that are central to the negotiations, and flexibility in managing political pressures. While the approach of providing flexibility on a certain percentage of tariff lines is seriously flawed, the proposed Modalities still appear to provide worthwhile market access. Better ways appear to be needed to deal with developing countries'concerns about food price volatility while reducing the collective-action problems resulting from price insulation.

Suggested Citation

  • Laborde, David & Martin, Will, 2012. "Agricultural trade : what matters in the Doha round ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6261, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6261
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Anderson, Kym & Martin, Will & Valenzuela, Ernesto, 2006. "The relative importance of global agricultural subsidies and market access," World Trade Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 5(03), pages 357-376, November.
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    5. Diao, Xinshen & Somwaru, Agapi & Roe, Terry L., 2001. "A Global Analysis Of Agricultural Trade Reform In Wto Member Countries," Bulletins 12984, University of Minnesota, Economic Development Center.
    6. Will Martin & Patrick Messerlin, 2007. "Why is it so difficult? Trade liberalization under the Doha Agenda," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(3), pages 347-366, Autumn.
    7. Houssein Guimbard & David Laborde Debucquet & Cristina Mitaritonna, 2009. "A Picture of Tariff Protection Across the World in 2004 MAcMap-HS6, Version 2," Working Papers 2009-22, CEPII research center.
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    14. Bernard Hoekman, 2011. "Aid for Trade: Why, what and where are we?," STUDIES IN TRADE AND INVESTMENT, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP).
    15. Ivanic, Maros & Martin, Will, 2008. "Implications of higher global food prices for poverty in low-income countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4594, The World Bank.
    16. Thomas W. Hertel & Will Martin & Amanda M. Leister, 2010. "Potential Implications of a Special Safeguard Mechanism in the World Trade Organization: the Case of Wheat," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 24(2), pages 330-359, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Brockhaus, Jan & Kalkuhl, Matthias, 2015. "Grain emergency reserve cooperation – A theoretical analysis of benefits from a common emergency reserve," 2015 Conference, August 9-14, 2015, Milan, Italy 212767, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    2. Bouët, Antoine & Laborde Debucquet, David & Martimort, David, 2014. "Two-tier asymmetric information as a motive for trade, trade policies, and inefficient trade agreements:," IFPRI discussion papers 1383, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    3. Will Martin, 2017. "Agricultural Trade and Food Security," Policy notes & Policy briefs 1744, OCP Policy Center.
    4. Brockhaus, Jan & Kalkuhl, Matthias & Kozicka, Marta, 2016. "What Drives India’s Rice Stocks? Empirical Evidence," 2016 Annual Meeting, July 31-August 2, 2016, Boston, Massachusetts 235659, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Agribusiness; Free Trade; Emerging Markets; Trade Policy; Economic Theory&Research;

    JEL classification:

    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • F17 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Forecasting and Simulation
    • O24 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Trade Policy; Factor Movement; Foreign Exchange Policy

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