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Foro Global sobre Seguridad Alimentaria y Nutrición • Foro FSN

Re: The 11th WTO Ministerial Conference (MC11) and its significance for food security in Africa

Harriet Nsubuga
Harriet NsubugaAgribusiness Management AssociatesUganda

The export restrictions within the concerned African country can enhance food security in the short run because Governments are ensuring food availability and accessibility for their people. This however has to be temporary because the export restrictions affect neighbouring countries that are food importers in that food becomes expensive due to limited availability. It means the people with low incomes might not access such foods due to the high cost leading to malnutrition. For countries within the same Regional Economic Community for example East African Community (EAC), the export restrictions should be avoided so as to build trade between member countries.

WTO disciplines on export restrictions should be stricter, but this depends on whether they can be enforced. There some instances where the WTO discipline may not be considered; for example developing and Least Developed Countries were allowed flexibilities to institute export restrictions if there is likelihood of food insecurity within their countries.