Topics handled by WTO committees and agreements
Issues covered by the WTO’s committees and agreements

AGRICULTURE NEGOTIATIONS: BACKGROUNDER

The issues, and where we are now

UPDATED 1 DECEMBER 2004  
Click for Doha Development Agenda gatewayThis briefing document explains current agricultural issues raised before and in the current negotiations. It has been prepared by the Information and Media Relations Division of the WTO Secretariat to help public understanding about the agriculture negotiations. It is not an official record of the negotiations.

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See also:
> An outline of the WTO’s Agriculture Agreement in the section on agriculture in “Understanding the WTO”

> Detailed information on agriculture in the WTO

> Fact sheets: “The boxes” in domestic support and Tariff reduction methods

> Detailed information on the agriculture negotiations (including the draft “framework” and “modalities”, proposals and many statements)

Click for Doha Development Agenda gateway
> Information on the Doha Development Agenda mandate


Contents

Introduction      >  back to top

The present reform programme

The current negotiations

The objective: continuing reductions and other issues

The negotiations: from 2000 to now      >  back to top

Phases 1 and 2: March 2000-March 2002

Preparations for ‘modalities’: March 2002–July 2003

Cancún deadlock: September 2003

The July 2004 package and August decision

The issues: Exports      >  back to top

Export subsidies and competition

August 2004 framework: export subsidies and competition

After the framework: technical work on export subsidies and competition

Export restrictions and taxes

August 2004 framework: export restrictions and taxes

The issues: Market access      >  back to top

Market access: Tariffs and tariff quotas

Market access: special agricultural safeguards (SSGs)

Other Market access issues

August 2004 framework: market access

After the framework: technical work on market access

Visualized: approaches to tariff reduction formulas

The issues: Domestic support      >  back to top

Domestic support: Amber, Blue and Green Boxes

August 2004 framework: domestic support

After the framework: technical work on domestic support

Other issues      >  back to top

Developing countries

August 2004 framework: developing countries

Decision on net food-importing developing countries

August 2004 framework: net food-importing developing countries

Transition economies

August 2004 framework: transition economies and new members

‘Non-trade’ concerns: agriculture can serve many purposes

August 2004 framework: non-trade concerns

The peace clause

August 2004 framework: the peace clause

The Cotton Initiative

August 2004 framework: cotton

Cotton Sub-Committee

In a nutshell      >  back to top

Phase 1(23-24 March 2000 to 26-27 March 2001)

Phase 2 (26-27 March 2001 to 4-7 February 2002)

The Doha mandate (from the Doha Ministerial Conference, November 2001)

Preparations for ‘modalities’ and Cancún (26 March 2002 to September 2003)

The July 2004 package (September 2003 to 1 August 2004)

The post-framework “modalities” phase (September 2004–)

The proposals received in Phase 1

Technical submissions received in Phase 1

The proposals received in Phase 2

Technical submissions received during Phase 2

The Cancún ‘framework’ proposals

Countries, alliances and proposals

Key to the groups

Data      >  back to top

World trade in agricultural products, 2003

Top 15 agricultural exporters and importers, 2003

Agricultural products’ share in trade, by region, 2003

How much do they spend?



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