Agreement on Agriculture reimagined

balance of two worlds
Photo: r.classen / shutterstock

The world is in urgent need of a trading system that supports sustainable, SDG-consistent food systems and equitable outcomes – something the current WTO Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) fails to do. Not only are global warming, biodiversity loss, pandemics, and wars putting pressure on food production worldwide, but agriculture itself is also contributing to these challenges. A more balanced trade regime could counteract such challenges and incentivize a transformation towards more food sustainability.

Reshaping agricultural trade – promoting sustainable food systems

In the project “Agreement on Agriculture Reimagined – Towards a model Agreement on Agriculture Trade for Sustainable Development (AoA TSD)”, an international group of experts from the global North and global South is exploring ways to redesign global agricultural trade to support sustainable food systems in diverse contexts.

The group will develop a model Agreement on Agriculture Trade for Sustainable Development (AoA TSD), bringing together expertise from previous SNSF projects and elsewhere. In two mock negotiation rounds – both at the international level and the Swiss domestic level – the model agreement will be refined and disseminated, to advance a key policy agenda for change.

The project seeks to inform the growing debate on the interlinkages between trade and sustainable development, with a particular focus on sustainable food systems. It also seeks to inspire breakthroughs in intergovernmental agricultural trade negotiations at the WTO and beyond. It will help to establish new networks that break through the silos that separate trade from food security and environmental policies, building a much-needed bridge between “Rome”and “Geneva”.

Role of CDE

CDE is leading the project jointly with IATP, IISD, the Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences (a+), and ETH. Various experts from countries of the global South are complementing the team. CDE is responsible for drafting the template of the Model Agreement and for leading the mock parliamentarian negotiations in Switzerland. The project is built on robust teamwork. It follows an innovative methodology that enables compilation and consolidation of a range of expertise and perspectives.

Advisory Workshop
Advisory Workshop AoA Reimagined, 4-6 June 2023, Prangins, Switzerland
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