EP report 'Stocktake of the WTO Agricultural Negotiations after the Failure of the 2008 Talks'

The Agricultural and Rural Development Committee of the European Parliament has published a report entitled 'Stocktake of the WTO Agricultural Negotiations after the Failure of the 2008 Talks'. The report, which was undertaken by the international law firm, Gide Loyrette Nouel, was presented to the Committee at a meeting this week.

The study abstract states that:

"The present study provides an overview of the state of play of the WTO agricultural negotiations after the 2008 talks, and analyses the implications of the EC and US proposals for their respective agricultural policies. It draws conclusions and recommendations around possible scenarios of negotiations and about possible actions and changes to the CAP".

[WTO] negotiations may become difficult if, in parallel, discussions on the CAP post 2013 begin

Key conclusions and recommendations include:

  • "The new 'market-oriented' CAP model appears to have globally anticipated the possible Doha disciplines, especially on domestic support", however "Doha disciplines would increase European farmers' exposure to international competition and price volatility. It remains to be seen how the current CAP would 'absorb' the impact of the Doha Round".
  • "With regard to WTO rules and possible Doha disciplines... the CAP appears to offer more legal certainty than the US [Farm Bill]".
  • "The EC is likely to push for a short-term conclusion of the Doha Round on the basis of the current package. Negotiations may become difficult if, in parallel, discussions on the CAP post 2013 begin".
  • "the EC may still obtain concessions on [environmental and financial] services, as negotiations in this area are much less advanced."
  • "The CAP has taken a clear market orientation and it would be very difficult, both under the Doha disciplines and in view of the position of several Member States in favour of a 'CAP light', to make a complete shift backwards."
  • "The Health Check has confirmed and completed the main orientations of the post-2003 CAP and it remains to be seen how it will be implemented, especially how Member States will make use of their 'tool box' and how the Commission will manage interventions."
  • "Concerning the SFP, if it was to be changed in the future, [e.g. to address perceived inequalities between the EU-15 and New Member States] the new constraint of the green box ... could lead to... significant changes, and not just updates of payment entitlements."

A copy of the report is available to download here.

PUBLICATION DATE

03 Sep 2009

AUTHOR

IEEP

FURTHER INFORMATION

The Institute for European Environmental Policy coordinates CAP2020. It is an independent not for profit institute which undertakes research in a number of policy areas including agriculture and rural development.


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