Markets and Trade

Trade policy and trade agreements

Trade agreements influence patterns of trade as well as the production and consumption of food. Ongoing World Trade Organization (WTO) agricultural negotiations and a rapid increase in bilateral, regional and mega-regional trade agreements have seen trade rules becoming more complex. In this context, FAO assists its Members to implement trade agreements and to prepare for trade negotiations, through studies, analyses, training and experience sharing, thus supporting countries’ effective participation in the multilateral trading system and promoting the benefits of trade to be shared by all.

Key messages

Multilateral trade rules, which take into account the specific needs of developing countries, are needed to ensure that the expansion of agricultural trade is conducive to the eradication of hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition.

Trade policies must consider the different needs and roles of both large-scale agricultural producers and those of smallholder and family farms.

FAO emphasizes the need to strengthen coordinated and participatory policy-making processes, and promotes more inclusive, transparent, and predictable rules for trade policy making and implementation.