Skip to comments.G-8 agrees to subsidy cuts for WTO's success (Goodby America Farm
Posted on 07/17/2006 11:10:05 AM PDT by cope85
G-8 agrees to subsidy cuts for WTO's success
The world's top eight industrial nations on Monday appeared to have climbed down from a tough position on farm subsidies, reviving hopes of resumption of the collasped WTO talks.
"The Doha Round should deliver real cuts in tariffs, effective cuts in subsidies and real new trade flows," a statement issued at the G-8 Summit in St Petersburg said emphasising, it is "fully committed to the development dimension of ongoing WTO talks."
Regretting that the talks in Geneva failed early this month, the heads of government of US, UK, France, Japan, Canada, Italy, Russia and Germany said, "We commit ourselves to substantial improvement for market access in trade in both agriculture and industrial products and expanding opportunities in trade in services."
The WTO talks in Geneva collasped after the US stuck to its position and refused to move forward in cutting farm subsidies and desired by developing countries, including India.
"In agriculture we are committed to substantially reducing trade-distorting domestic support and to the parallel elimination by the end of 2013 of all forms of export subsidies a well as establishment of effective disciplines on all export measures with equivalent effect as agreed in Hong Kong," the statement said.
"We urge all parties to work with utmost urgency for conclusion of the round by 2006-end to strengthen multilateral trading system," it added.
Earlier at WTO talks at Geneva, while the European Union had agreed to match the cuts in import tariff for farm produts that developing countries led by India and Brazil had asked for, the US was reluctant to move on farm subsidies.
With the US adamant on the issue of subsidies, there was no negotiating space for developing countries, Commerce Minister Kamal Nath had said on his return from the collasped talks.
The statement, which has revived hopes of resuming the stalled talks, said the Doha Round is a historic opportunity to generate economic growth, create potential for development and raise living standards across the world.
Asking WTO Chief Pascal Lamy to work towards agreement on modalities in agriculture and industrial tariffs within a month, the statement called up on all countries to commit to taking necessary action for successful completion of Doha round.
Only seven of the G-8 countries are WTO members while Russia is negotiating its entry in to it.
On the issue of Russia's entry in to WTO, the statement said the G-8 supported its expeditious accession to the WTO in accordance with the rules that apply to all its members.
The G-8 nations also renewed its commitment to pursue a high level of ambition in all areas of Doha Development Agenda with a view of reaching a meaningful and balanced outcome.
The G-8 said it was committed to the development dimension of Doha round and need to improve the participation of developing countries, including through South-south trade and enhanced regional integration.
Appreciating the problems of least developed countries to integrate in to the global trading system, the G-8 said it would continue to ensure that this was reflected in appropriate flexibility in the negotiations.
World Government at work
Personally, I think that we cannot cut farm subsidies fast enough.
I'd like to be planting a few hundred acres of corn these days; it looks like they aren't going to be needing much help, but I defer to your expertise.
This is a backdoor way to get congress to quit spending pork on local farmers. Where's the downside?
I agree. Let us cease to support the US sugar farmers and let Central America and Carribbean nations emerge from under their boot. Feeling sorry for farmers is nowhere on my list.
I don't want to be dependent on some foreign leftist govt. for our food.
I want the federal government to stop paying farmers not to grow crops.
I am with you, Mace!
That is my point of view,also.
Hopefully this means no more peanut farmers for president.
There is a widespread misconception that farmers are much poorer than most Americans. But most farming is done on large corporate farms, not family farms, and most farmers, on the whole, are better off than the popular misconception allows. As a Department of Agriculture report states, On average, farm households have higher incomes, greater wealth, and lower consumption expenditures than all U.S. households. Specifically, farmers earn incomes 17 percent above the national average and report net worths well above the national average. In 1999, the 136,000 households with annual farm sales of more than over $250,000the group that receives the largest farm subsidiesreported an average income of $135,397, or two-and-a-half times the national average. By no means a faltering industry, the farm industry suffers a failure rate just one-sixth the rate for non-farm businesses. Still, taxpayers subsidize (mostly large) farms with between $15 billion and $30 billion annually.
In addition, subsidies harm farmers because they simply make no economic sense. Farm policy is based on the premise that a surplus of crops has lowered crop prices too far and farmers need subsidies to recover lost income. The federal government's remedy is to offer subsidies that increase as a farmer plants more crops. Planting more crops, however, only leads to greater crop surpluses, driving prices down even further and spurring demands for even greater subsidies. Then, while paying some farmers to plant more crops, Washington turns around and pays other farmers not to farm 40 million acres of cropland each year. The economic illiteracy exhibited by farm subsidies is stunning even by government standards.
Source: The Heritage Foundation
Subsidies DO NOT support small farmers; susidies are to the conglomerates like ADM (Arthur-Daniel-Midlands) and Con-Agra Foods, etc. These are the corporate support donators that keep politicians in office, not the little guys. They've got sweetheart deals up the wazzoo, and for those of us old enough to remember some of the shenanigans that go on in these pork deals, remember Billy Sol Estes and his cotton subsidies?
This "one world order" crap is no more than world-wide socialism. We now do it via "foreign aid", to buy off dictators and subsidize competitors and moving our production off-shore to avoid the cost of labor and services in the USA. There's no end to it. None of the Third World could compete with U.S. technology, so the trend now is to sell the technology, and exploit the Third World Labor. You (the U.S. citizen) cannot compete with them now due to the tax load you carry. If you were taxed at less than (all hidden and overt taxes) the current 50%+ you are currently paying, you could live on a lower wage, too.
I'm almost ready to adopt a tag-line I saw on FR a while back...."Live free or move"
I agree with that.
"Specifically, farmers earn incomes 17 percent above the national average and report net worths well above the national average."
That's fine, except for the fact that your typical farmer is a small businesses. Now if you were to compare them to the pool of small business owners, your statistics wouldn't be bogus.
I guess you want to continue to be dependent on a domestic leftist government for our food.
Our current system is extremely corrupt. We need to get rid of it.
Typo on my last line, the $1.10 should be $1.12.
While I despise farm/crop subsidies, I do want to protect our ability to feed ourselves which requires that farming remain a desired and rewarding occupation.
My personal solution is to end all subsidies and to make individual personal income derived from farm product sales non-taxable. Corporate farm income would not be exempt.
Now I realize this would cause explosive growth in agricultural pursuits, but I figure the resulting drop in food prices and increased availability is worth the resulting drop in collected tax revenue.
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