With each new event or international conference in 2008’s saga of economic and food crises, there are calls to complete the long-running Doha Round of World Trade Organization negotiations. The international players all act as if achieving a Doha agreement, seemingly any agreement, will help solve one or more aspects of these crises.
The latest such conference was the G-20 Summit, Nov. 14-15 in Washington, D.C., called to coordinate actions on the financial and consequent economic crises that have spread from the U.S. to much of the world. The joint statement released at the conclusion of the G-20 Summit called for trade ministers to try to finally conclude the Doha Round.
That is not about to happen before the Obama administration takes office. Events of the past five years amply demonstrate that fundamental differences in perspectives about the roles of agriculture in trade can no longer be glossed over.
Leaders of the 20 participating countries released a 16-point statement at the conclusion of the G-20 Summit on Nov. 15. Point 13 reads as follows:
We underscore the critical importance of rejecting protectionism and not turning inward in ti... Read more