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DOHA NEGOTIATIONS ON AGRICULTURE AND FUTURE OF THE WTO MULTILATERAL TRADE SYSTEM


Alan Matthews, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland
alan.matthews@tcd.ie

IIIS Discussion Paper No. 436

The WTO Doha Round of trade negotiations was launched in 2001 and after twelve years of negotiations members seem unable to bring it to a successful conclusion. An attempt to agree on an' early harvest' of deliverables will be made at the 9th WTO Ministerial Conference in Bali in December 2013, but the prospects for success appear uncertain. This paper describes the stage that the negotiations have reached in agriculture and summarises the most recent draft modalities for agricultural trade liberalisation. It surveys recent estimates of the value of what is currently on the table. It discusses the reasons for the current impasse in the negotiations and asks whether agricultural trade liberalisation would be better served by abandoning the Doha Round. The paper argues that this would not be the case, and concludes by speculating on the minimum conditions necessary to ensure a conclusion to the Round.


Keywords: WTO, Doha Round, agricultural trade liberalisation, Bali Ministerial Council
JEL: F55, Q17


Last updated 28 August 2014 by IIIS (Email).