Evolving factors shaping trade in agriculture and food
Agricultural trade is shaped by geopolitical, geo-economic, social, and cultural trends. These can lead to more or less globalization, but which is better for agriculture and food security? International trade in food favors production in the most efficient regions, a factor of growing importance as we tackle the escalating impacts of climate change. Recent experiences during the food price spikes of 2007/08 and 2010/11, and more recently during the COVID-19 pandemic, have encouraged some countries to promote self-sufficiency measures or institute export restrictions. Some governments have enacted domestic measures to promote healthier, safer, and/or more sustainable food though consumer safety standards, carbon pricing, and product labeling, all of which have implications for border measures and trade and risk hurting the most vulnerable economies and fragmenting the regulatory field. Meanwhile, governments continue to subsidize agriculture with measures that distort production and trade and WTO negotiations are stalled.
Is international agricultural trade part of the problem, or part of the solution to the global food crisis? How can negotiations in the WTO be revitalized to address these concerns? Join Pascal Lamy (former Director-General of the World Trade Organization) and our expert panel for a discussion of the policies, measures, and institutional arrangements that shape trade in agriculture.
- Nancy Birdsall, Senior Fellow, President Emeritus, Center for Global Development
- Pascal Lamy, Former European Commissioner and Director-General, WTO
- Mari Elka Pangestu, Managing Director of Development Policy and Partnerships, World Bank
- Charlotte Hebebrand, Director of Communications and Public Affairs, IFPRI