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Agreement on Agriculture Articles

Agreement on Agriculture Articles: A Comprehensive Overview

The Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) is a landmark agreement that was signed by members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 1994. The AoA is a comprehensive agreement that sets out the rules for international trade in agricultural products. The agreement covers various aspects of agricultural trade, including market access, domestic support, and export subsidies.

The AoA consists of several articles that deal with different aspects of agricultural trade. In this article, we will provide a comprehensive overview of the key articles of the AoA.

Article 1: Scope and Coverage

Article 1 sets out the scope and coverage of the AoA. It states that the agreement covers all agricultural products, whether processed or unprocessed, and whether imported or exported. The article also states that the agreement applies to all trade measures affecting agricultural products, including tariffs, subsidies, and other forms of support.

Article 2: Market Access

Article 2 deals with market access for agricultural products. It sets out the rules for tariff reduction and elimination, as well as rules for non-tariff measures such as quotas and import licenses. The article also provides for the creation of a system of tariff bindings, which ensures that WTO members cannot increase their tariffs beyond a certain level.

Article 3: Domestic Support

Article 3 deals with domestic support measures, which are subsidies that governments provide to their domestic agricultural producers. The article sets out the rules for reducing and disciplining domestic support, in order to prevent governments from distorting international trade through unfair support measures.

Article 4: Export Competition

Article 4 deals with export subsidies, which are subsidies that governments provide to their domestic agricultural producers to help them compete in international markets. The article sets out the rules for reducing and disciplining export subsidies, in order to prevent governments from distorting international trade through unfair export competition.

Article 5: Special and Differential Treatment

Article 5 provides for special and differential treatment for developing countries. The article recognizes that developing countries may need more time and flexibility to implement the provisions of the AoA, and provides for a number of exemptions and special treatment measures for developing countries.

Article 6: Monitoring and Surveillance

Article 6 provides for the monitoring and surveillance of the implementation of the AoA. The article requires WTO members to provide regular reports on their agricultural trade measures, and establishes a committee to monitor and review the implementation of the agreement.

Conclusion

The Agreement on Agriculture is a comprehensive agreement that covers all aspects of agricultural trade. Its key articles deal with market access, domestic support, export competition, special and differential treatment for developing countries, and monitoring and surveillance. The AoA has been credited with reducing trade barriers and increasing market access for agricultural products, but it has also been criticized for favoring developed countries over developing countries. Overall, the AoA remains an important agreement in international trade and continues to shape the global agricultural trade landscape.