From the Uruguay Round to coloured boxes
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CTA. 2002. From the Uruguay Round to coloured boxes. Spore 101. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/47688
Internet URL: http://spore.cta.int/images/stories/pdf/old/spore101.pdf
A major achievement of the so-called Uruguay Round (the round of world trade negotiations from the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s which led to the formation of the World Trade Organisation) was the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA). The AoA aimed at three...
A major achievement of the so-called Uruguay Round (the round of world trade negotiations from the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s which led to the formation of the World Trade Organisation) was the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA). The AoA aimed at three sets of reductions: the levels of customs duties, internal support mechanisms and export subsidies. Coming into effect in 1995, the AoA was to be implemented by developed countries within 6 years and by developing countries within 12 years. In fact, the developed countries reduced the level of their customs levies by 36% on average. For internal support to domestic agriculture, three categories were created, and they have become known as boxes . In the orange box of direct subsidies to prices and production, reductions by developed countries have averaged 20%. The green box contains public subsidies which are not linked to the price or production of a specific product, but to an overall sector (such as environment) or programme (such as research). In the blue box we find public subsidies which support restrictions on production levels. As far as export subsidies are concerned, developed countries had to reduce their support to agricultural exports by 36%, in terms of the amount of subsidies paid, and by 21% for the volume of subsidised exports. As a general rule, developing countries had targets about two-thirds of the levels applicable to developed countries. The least-developed countries were exempted from the three areas covered by the AoA. The actual implementation of the AoA has not always been convincing, since the accepted formulas for calculating reductions gave countries too much leeway in choosing which customs duties to reduce and what level of support to maintain.