Other tasks of the TF-WAR included the evaluation of existing policies and programmes in the agricultural sector and the development of policy and programme recommendations to address gaps that undermine the benefits of WTO accession; review of measures taken prior to the accession of the Philippines in 1995 to adapt the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and measures to improve competition (backstops); and the identification of projects and sources of financing to improve the competitiveness of Philippine agriculture. The Agriculture Agreement prohibits agricultural export subsidies unless such subsidies are included in a Schedule of Members` commitments. When listed, the agreement requires WTO members to reduce both the amount of money they spend on export subsidies and the quantities of exports benefiting from subsidies. On the basis of the 1986-90 averages, industrialized countries agreed to reduce the value of export subsidies by 36% over the six years from 1995 onwards (24% over 10 years for developing countries). Developed countries have also agreed to reduce the volume of subsidized exports by 21 per cent over the six years (14 per cent over 10 years for developing countries). The least developed countries do not have to make cuts. As foreign monopolies enjoyed their “profit positions” and pocketed profits, Filipino farmers were repeatedly thrown into deteriorating “losing positions.” The “export-oriented and import-dependent” character of agriculture and the economy has been reinforced, and its chronic symptoms include the relocation of jobs and livelihoods of millions of people to agriculture and manufacturing, all as a result of WTO submission. Each new work of the TF-WAR begins with concrete development in the WTO agricultural negotiations. The Office of Agriculture of the Dae in Geneva regularly communicates to the TF-WAR the progress of the negotiations. Together with the reports of the Deputy Secretary for Policy and Planning of the Management Action Plan, who is both the negotiator in the capital and the President of tf-war, on the outcome of the special negotiations in Geneva, this is the basis for the future work of tf-war.

The capitalist negotiator plays a central role in negotiations, as he is the link between the internal and external process. All this dynamic is illustrated in the diagram in which the negotiating team of the Geneva Philippines Mission/Agriculture receives and feeds the TF-WAR process on the one hand, and receives and feeds the Geneva Process on the other hand. For products whose non-tariff restrictions have been converted into tariffs, governments can take special emergency measures (special safeguards) to prevent rapidly falling prices or increased imports from harming their farmers. However, the agreement specifies when and how these emergency measures may be introduced (e.B. they cannot be applied to imports under a tariff quota). One. The agricultural trade negotiation process back to top Measures with minimal impact on trade can be used freely You are in a green box (green as in traffic lights). These include government services such as research, disease control, infrastructure and food security.

This includes direct payments to farmers who do not stimulate production, such as certain forms of direct income support, aid to help farmers restructure agriculture and direct payments under environmental and regional aid programmes. The original GATT applied to trade in agricultural products, but had shortcomings. For example, it has allowed countries to apply and subsidize certain non-tariff measures, such as import quotas. Agricultural trade has been severely distorted, in particular by the use of export subsidies that would not normally have been allowed for manufactured goods. The Uruguay Round produced the first multilateral agreement on this sector. This was an important first step towards order, fair competition and a less distorted sector. It was implemented over a six-year period (and is still implemented by developing countries during their 10-year period), which began in 1995. The Uruguay Round agreement included a commitment to pursue reform through further negotiations.

These were introduced in 2000, as required by the Agriculture Agreement. At the end of 2001, after the start of the new WTO Round in Doha, the structure and organization of the TF-WAR changed as a result of the reorganization and relocation of Development Agenda staff involved in tf-WAR. A new special order was issued to restore the TF-WAR. (7) Although the composition of stakeholders remained intact, this time it was a less formal organisation and was streamlined to include only government agencies that were significantly involved in trade policy-making. The secondary functions of the TF-WAR have been eliminated and its work has now focused on the exclusive responsibility for formulating the national negotiating position in agriculture. A major innovation, however, was the formation of a unit group in early 2002. The possibility of transforming the negotiating position formulation function into an inclusive process provided the necessary preparations for the next WTO ministerial meeting in Seattle at the end of 1999. Stakeholder participation and work could focus on a key objective, namely the preparation of the Ministerial Conference and global negotiations on a new agricultural agreement. Reductions in agricultural subsidies and agricultural protection agreed in the Uruguay Round. Only figures relating to the reduction of export subsidies are included in the agreement.

The agricultural bargaining team is based on a negotiating mandate developed with the TF-WAR and with the approval of the President. Problems related to the mandate and level of salary of Geneva-based employees are reported only to the capital. In the meantime, questions that need to be clarified at the level of the PLAN official will be sent to the capital for decision. The core group will be convened on short notice and the topic(s) will be evaluated. Approved instructions and alternatives are then sent to Geneva. On important issues requiring a political decision(9), the matter is referred to the Capital for evaluation and recommendation by the Core Group and all TF-WAR members, as well as for final approval and mandate by the Secretary. The mandates of the Ministerial Conferences will be obtained through an additional channel to the TRM Cabinet and the President. NOTES: 1.- National Statistical Coordination Council, National Income Accounts 1st quarter 2004, available from www.nscb.gov.ph. back to text 2.- 2001 Data for products of agricultural origin, Philippine Statistical Yearbook 2002, National Statistical Coordination Council. back to text 3.- National income accounts 1st quarter 2004.

back to text 4.- V. Bruce Tolentino, Cristina David, Arsenio Balisacan and Ponciano Intal Jr., Strategic Actions to Rapidly Achieve Food Security and Rural Growth in the Philippines, 29 March 2001, cited by Walden Bello, The WTO and the Disappearance of Philippine Agriculture, Focus on the Global South, 20 June 2003. back to text 5.- Published by the Office of the Secretary, Department of Agriculture, 28 September 1999. Back to text 6.- The initial members included: the Government, the National Council for Agriculture and Fisheries (NAFC), the Secretariat of the Minimum Volume of Access (MAV), the Planning and Monitoring Service of the DA. From the private sector, representatives of the Philippine House of Food Manufacturers, the National Onion Growers Co-operative, the Philippine Association of Hog Raisers, Inc., the Federation of Free Farmers, the Coffee Foundation of the Philippines, the National Federation of Hog Farmers, Inc., the Philippine Association of Meat Processors, Inc. Among the NGOs, the following NGOs were represented: Sanduguan, Pambansang Kilusan ng mga Samahang Magsasaka, CODE-ONG, Philippine Business for Social Progress. Membership has been expanded to include the cereals, sugar, poultry and fisheries sectors. The latter eventually formed their own working group, with fisheries negotiations being conducted separately in the WTO. return to text 7.- Special Decree No.

450 issued by the Office of the Secretary, September 2001. back to Text 8.- Published by the Office of the Secretary, Department of Agriculture. back to text 9.- For example, joining the G20 (Group of 20) or organizing the PS and SSM Alliance (Special Products and Special Safeguard Mechanism). Back to text 10.- The guidelines state that when deciding on the level of confidentiality to be granted to information, the body must take due account of the two issues of the right to public information and national security in order to strike a balance between the protection of individuals` fundamental right to public information on matters of public interest and access to official documents. on the one hand, and the need to protect vital secrets and information that compromise national security and the national interest, on the other. Any breach of trust regarding an obligation of confidentiality is a reason for the withdrawal of the members of the Working Group. The Working Group may take legal action against the offending party, Department of Agriculture, Confidentiality Guidelines, March 2000. Back to text 11.- Special products (SP) is a new concept introduced in the current round and agreed by members as a modality for further elaboration in the framework agreement recently adopted for the famous package of July 2004.

It is a Special and Differentiation Mechanism (NSD) that provides developing countries with flexibility in recognition of the inherent difficulties they face in implementing their WTO commitments and a means of achieving the objectives of the Doha Development Agenda, namely food security, livelihood security and rural development. .