A Potential W.T.O.- Congressional Disconnect?

Keith Good

FarmPolicy.comConcrete achievements made at the latest round of W.T.O. trade talks in Hong Kong were modest.

Most notable was an agreement that sets a deadline for wiping out subsidies of agricultural exports by 2013.

And reaction to the talks from newspaper editorial boards was mostly negative.

Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal indicated that, “The negotiators signed a substantially weakened deal that includes a commitment to eliminate farm subsidies by 2013, modest cuts in tariffs, and an April 30, 2006 deadline for agreeing on how to liberalize farm and non-farm trade.”

Farm Policy

The W.T.O. & The 2007 Farm Bill

Keith Good

FarmPolicy.com Today, the sixth annual W.T.O. Ministerial meeting gets underway in Hong Kong. On the agenda: The Doha Developmental round of trade negotiations.

This is a good time to briefly discuss some of the technical issues associated with the talks, and what these specific rules could mean for future U.S. domestic farm policy.

Although it’s easy to speak generically about “farm subsidies,” it’s very important to remember that the W.T.O. classifies subsidies into three specific categories- or “boxes.”

Farm Policy

International Pressure On Domestic Farm Programs

Keith Good

FarmPolicy.comThe long awaited sixth W.T.O. Ministerial Conference will be held in Hong Kong, China, next week (Dec. 13–18).

According to the W.T.O. webpage, “This sixth conference will be vital for enabling the four-year-old Doha Development Agenda (D.D.A.) negotiations forward sufficiently to conclude the round in 2006.”

Embedded within the trade talks is the increasingly controversial issue of American and European farm subsidies.

Farm Policy

Biotech Issues On The Ballot

Keith Good

FarmPolicy.comBiotechnology continues to be an issue that generates a high level of passion among farm policy observers as well as citizen voters both internationally and domestically.

The biotech issue has tremendous implications for agricultural trade and development.

This month, two separate votes on biotech ballot initiatives provide an interesting snap shot into the current nature of the debate.

Farm Policy

Canadian Corn Dispute

Keith Good

FarmPolicy.comInternational developments continue to influence the domestic farm policy political environment this week.

Specifically, a Canadian federal agency has ruled that U.S. corn subsidies are harming some Canadian farmers.

Earlier this fall, some corn farmers from Ontario, Quebec and Manitoba, asked the Canadian government to investigate a claim regarding the dumping of American grain corn into the Canadian market.

Farm Policy

Farm Policy Developments Center On Congressional Budget Action & Trade Talks

Keith Good

FarmPolicy.comDevelopments in U.S. farm policy this week included important legislative action in Congress, as well as a trip to Latin America by President Bush.

The Senate on Thursday passed a five-year budget reduction bill by a vote of 52 to 47.

The legislation, which is slated to garner budget saving of $35 billion, contained approximately $3 billion in cuts to agricultural programs.

Farm Policy