Farm Subsidies

Do'h Doha

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Doha World Trade Organizaion talks at risk of collapse as Brazil and India walk out–they claim over U.S. and E.U's tight grip on continuing agriculture subsidies:

Brazilian Foreign Minister Celso Amorim and Indian Commerce Minister Kamal Nath…said talks derailed because the U.S. and the EU refused to improve their farm-aid offers. The numbers presented by the U.S. on domestic subsidies exceeded those demanded by the so-called G20 alliance of farm commodity- exporting nations while the EU's tariff-cut offers were insufficient, Amorim said.

……….
Nath said the U.S. offered to cap its overall spending on trade-distorting domestic support at $17 billion. As leaders of the G20, which also includes China and Argentina, India and Brazil are pushing for an annual U.S. spending limit of no more than $15 billion.

…….
The Bush administration now spends $10.8 billion a year on support payments that distort market prices to American farmers, Nath said. A ceiling of $17 billion would represent "a 50 percent increase," he told journalists.

Jesse Walker on how intransigent foreigners are Americans' best friends when it comes to Doha.

Ron Bailey witnesses the collapse of WTO talks in Cancun back in 2003.

Previous Doha blogging here and here.

Six reasons from our February 2006 issue why we don't need international trade talks to do what's best for us–and the world–when it comes to trade and ag subsidies. That is, liberalize, and unilaterally.

NEXT: Gitmo Gone?

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  1. That is, liberalize, and unilaterally.

    Yes, but then you don’t have any political allies, only enemies. It’s the right thing to do, but it’s bad politics.

  2. Can anyone come up with a greater example of hypocrisy than the industrialized nations yammering about free trade for everything but agricultural products?

  3. Screw India. I need to make yacht payments!

  4. DAR nails it, as he has so often today. Major kudos also for you comment on the creationist thread. That was brilliant.

  5. The people who talk against trade agreements based on “sovereignty” forget, or maybe know, that it that phrase normally = protectionsism.

    What about “individual sovereignty”, i.e. my right as an individual consumer to have my choice of products, with market set prices?

    Oh, and if we allowed these imported agricultural products and more important manufactured products to come into the world’s richest market, would fewer people feel the need to immigrate here?

  6. “Oh, and if we allowed these imported agricultural products and more important manufactured products to come into the world’s richest market, would fewer people feel the need to immigrate here?”

    More people would WANT to immigrate here — more freedom makes a country more attractive to people suffering from statist regimes.

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  8. @jh – I suspect that libertreee is taking the “long view” that by increasing imports of foreign manufactured goods would require the foreign countries to produce more foreign goods which would require the foreign countries to hire more foreign laborers to fill those jobs which would drive up wages (Demand Kurve!) for those foreign jobs which would both “reduce the supply” of foreign laborers who COULD come to America at the same time as “reducing the demand” (desire) of those laborers to come to America, since those foreign laborers could find reasonably well paying jobs in those foreign countries.

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  15. Jake – agreed.

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