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Trade and development aspects of the Commission’s November 2010 Communication on the CAP after 2013


This paper was originally prepared as a background note for a Geneva dialogue with WTO trade delegates organized by the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development on 24 November 2010.In preparing the paper, I have drawn on research funded by Irish Aid under its Policy Coherence for Development grant to the Institute for International Integration Studies (IIIS) at Trinity College Dublin as well as on a research project funded in the IIIS by the German Marshall Fund of the United States on Europe’s Common Agricultural Policy and Developing Countries. I am grateful both to Irish Aid and the German Marshall Fund for their support, but neither body is responsible for the opinions expressed which are entirely my own responsibility.

Alan Matthews,
Trinity College Dublin, Ireland

IIIS Discussion Paper No. 347


The Commission’s Communication on the CAP post 2013 published in November 2010 sets out three optionsfor the future shape of Europe’s Common Agricultural Policy. This paper explains the background and rationale for the debate on CAP reform at the present time. It describes the content of the preferred reform option and examines the implications for trade and for developing countries. Despite fears raised by the rhetoric of maintaining the EU’s production capacity to guarantee food security, the proposals maintain the market orientation of previous CAP reforms. Virtually all the proposed changes concern measures which are classified in the Green Box in the EU’s reporting of its WTO commitment obligations. The absence of detail in the current Communication does not permit to quantify whether the proposed measures would be minimally more or less trade-distorting than at present, but there are good reasons to think that they would be minimally less trade-distorting. However, the overall impact cannot be assessed until the parallel negotiations on the EU’s medium-term budget perspective are completed and the budget expenditure on the different instruments in the proposed agricultural policy toolkit are known.

Last updated 28 August 2014 by IIIS (Email).