The Director General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has expressed concern over the threat posed by global agricultural subsidies to the global economy. Speaking at a discussion hosted by the Institute of Economic Affairs, she warned that the cost of global agricultural subsidies could reach a staggering $1 trillion by 2030 if the trend is not checked.
Currently, the total cost of global agricultural subsidies is estimated to be between $500 and $800 billion dollars. According to Okonjo-Iweala, the bulk of these subsidies are found in developed countries and emerging markets, which creates an unfair advantage for those who can afford them.
she also called for a reduction in subsidies and the adoption of policies that would promote free and fair trade in agricultural products. She noted that agricultural subsidies are not only a matter of fairness, but also a matter of economic efficiency.
Okonjo-Iweala emphasized that if no action is taken, global agricultural subsidies could reach $1 trillion by 2030. She urged members of the World Trade Centre to work together to address this issue and promote fair trade practices in the agricultural sector.
Agricultural subsidies have long been a contentious issue in global trade, with some arguing that they distort global markets and give unfair advantages to certain countries. The WTO has been working to address this issue, but progress has been slow. The recent warning by the Director General highlights the urgent need for action to be taken to address the growing threat posed by agricultural subsidies to the global economy.