Monthly Archives: July 2003

Access is the key to trade reform

The spin doc­tors on all sides are “try­ing to hint(Reuters report via Yahoo News)”: at some con­ver­gence on the issue of agri­cul­tur­al trade reform at the Mon­tre­al meet­ing of WTO trade min­is­ters. But the ‘hint’ of flex­i­bil­i­ty in the EU posi­tion is all about par­tial cuts in sub­si­dies for exports and domes­tic pro­duc­ers, not about […]

Stealing common words

The Euro­pean Com­mis­sion is prepar­ing a list of 35 com­mon food names such as “parme­san” and “feta” whose use it wants banned through­out the world except when applied to Euro­pean prod­ucts. It’s an attempt to fur­ther pro­tect its agri­cul­tur­al industries—at the expense of devel­op­ing coun­tries. The “Finan­cial Times(link to the FT story)”: reports that the […]

Confusing Product with Process

Jacque­line Peel(link to Social Sci­ence Research Network)”: from the “Fac­ul­ty of Law(link to Law School at Melbourne)”: at Mebourne Uni­ver­si­ty has pub­lished an excel­lent analy­sis ofthe dif­fi­cul­ties still to be resolved by WTO mem­bers in man­ag­ing con­flicts between * the wish of each Mem­ber to safe­guard its own and the glob­al envi­ron­ment includ­ing by the […]

The obscenity of agricultural subsidies

Mar­tin Wolff of the Finan­cial Times (via “Lance Knobel(link to”: ) bq. “The OECD countries—essentially the world’s 30 rich­est nations—spent $311 bil­lion on domes­tic agri­cul­tur­al sub­si­dies in 2001. They spent $52 bil­lion on aid to all coun­tries. The 2001 GDP of sub-Saha­ran Africa was $301 bil­lion. bq. Worse, the annu­al dairy sub­sidy in the […]

Comparative advantage

Arnold Kling(link to EconLog)”: asks how to explain com­par­a­tive advan­tage so that a jour­nal­ist under­stands it. Well, its per­fect­ly pos­si­ble. After all, the idea was put into cir­cu­la­tion by a “stockbroker”: so it should be pos­si­ble to explain it to any prac­ti­cal per­son. Of course, that may exclude many aca­d­e­m­ic econ­o­mists… I’ve long believed that […]

NY Times keeps the pressure up

The Times is con­tin­u­ing to ham­mer the need for reform of world agri­cul­ture mar­kets. From Sunday’s edi­to­r­i­al ” By rig­ging the glob­al trade game against farm­ers in devel­op­ing nations, Europe, the Unit­ed States and Japan are essen­tial­ly kick­ing aside the devel­op­ment lad­der for some of the world’s most des­per­ate peo­ple. This is moral­ly depraved.  By […]

Long road to an FTA

I’m quot­ed in Sunday’s “Age(link to The Age Newspaper)”: on the nego­ti­a­tions that resume this week on the US-Aus­­tralia Free Trade Agree­ment. Some of the argu­ments you’ve seen elswhere on this site.