§ Lord Judd
asked Her Majesty's Government:
What is their policy towards agricultural subsidies in the context of the fight against world poverty. [HL4774]
§ Baroness Amos
The UK recognises the damaging impact of trade distorting agriculture subsidies on developing countries' agriculture sectors. The EU's heavy use of subsidies encourages over-production, which depresses world prices and so constrains agriculture investment in developing countries. In 2000 alone, the EU spent 98 billion euros on agriculture subsidies. At the Doha ministerial meeting last year it was agreed that agriculture negotiations would aim to achieve "substantial improvements in market access; reductions of, with a yew to phasing out, all forms of export subsidies; and substantial reductions in trade-distorting domestic support". We are committed to ensure that these negotiations result in liberalisation that will benefit the world's poor. Further, we are committed to pushing for significant reform of the common agriculture policy in order to achieve, amongst other objectives, a reduction in export and domestic subsidies.