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Issue paper


Food Export Restrictions: Review of the 2007-2010 Experience and Considerations for Disciplining Restrictive Measures

This paper reviews experiences on food export restrictions during 2007-10 and related studies and makes some proposals for disciplining export restrictions through the ongoing Doha Round negotiations. To start with, there is a strategic choice to be made. One option is to limit the disciplining to improving the requirements for notifications, information provision and consultations, along the line of the Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture Article 12. This is the choice that has been made by negotiators, as reflected in the draft Doha texts of December 2008. In the mean time, the 2007-10 food crisis and price spikes have prompted [...]



The State of Agricultural Commodity Markets 2009. High food prices and the food crisis – experiences and lessons learned

The State of Agricultural Commodity Markets 2009 aims to bring to a wider public an accessible discussion of agricultural commodity market issues and related policy matters. Although the findings and conclusions presented rely on recent technical analyses by FAO specialists in commodity and trade issues, this is not an overly technical report. Rather, it seeks to provide an objective and straightforward treatment of what are at times complicated economic issues for policy-makers, commodity market observers and all those interested in agricultural commodity market developments and their impact on developing countries.



Initiative on soaring food prices. Country responses to the food security crisis: Nature and preliminary implications of the policies pursued

The report intends to examine the short-term measures adopted by some 81 countries and is intended for policy makers and analysts.    Prices of staple foods, such as rice and vegetable oil, have doubled between January and May 2008. High food prices together with record petroleum and fertilizer prices have spurred inflation. Poorer households with a larger share of food in their total expenditures are suffering the most from high food prices, due to the erosion of purchasing power, which has a  negative impact on food security, nutrition and access to school and health services. Higher prices also result in [...]

Issue paper


Food Security and Agricultural Development in Sub-Saharan Africa. Building a Case for More Public Support. Policy Assistance Series 2

There are four main reasons for which agriculture in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) deserves more public support.  First is a moral imperative: SSA governments cannot and should not ignore a sector on which about 70 percent of their population directly depend for their livelihoods, if they are serious about their commitment to MDG1. Second, in spite of their generally poor performance, SSA countries do not have any realistic strategic option that they can rely upon for achieving sustainable economic development, other than agriculture. Third, there is evidence that appropriate policies and direct public sector investment have combined to trigger agriculture sector-led [...]

Issue paper


Facing the Challenge of an HIV/AIDS epidemic: Agricultural Extension Services in Sub-Saharan Africa

The mandate of extension services, whether public or private, has always been rural human resources development with an aim to increase food production through the introduction of improved agricultural technology. The very survival of these human resources, both within the extension organization and among the clientele, however, is currently at stake due to the HIV/AIDS menace. Urgent and major efforts are needed by the extension services to prepare themselves for battle against the epidemic, to educate the farming population about the disease, and to develop new strategies, methodologies, materials, technology and equipment to serve the extension needs of thousands of [...]
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