Thailand asks WTO to resolve export bans on food and agricultural products

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Thailand and 52 other countries have agreed to submit proposals to the World Trade Organization’s 12th Ministerial Conference (MC-12), scheduled for June 12-15 in Geneva, Switzerland, as the group calls for help of the WTO, which currently has 164 members, in resolving food export bans, particularly those affecting the United Nations World Food Programme.

Thailand has joined 53 other countries in calling on the World Trade Organization (WTO) to lift export bans on food and agricultural products, following concerns expressed by members over food shortages caused by the pandemic and the Russian-Ukrainian War.

Many countries have imposed export restrictions on food and agricultural products, affecting net food importers, according to Auramon Supthaweetum, director general of the Trade Negotiations Department.

Thailand and 52 other countries have agreed to submit proposals to the World Trade Organization’s 12th Ministerial Conference (MC-12), scheduled for June 12-15 in Geneva, Switzerland. The group is asking for help from the WTO, which currently has 164 members, to resolve food export bans, especially those affecting the United Nations World Food Programme.

MC-12 is due to discuss trade and health issues impacted by the pandemic, including food shortages, access to lifesaving medicines and vaccines, and the elimination of fisheries subsidies that contribute to overcapacity and overfishing. The meeting will discuss restrictions and reductions in agricultural subsidies, as well as resolutions on banning agricultural exports.

Meanwhile, Pimchanok Pitfield, Thailand’s ambassador and permanent representative to the World Trade Organization, said the group’s latest report predicted global economic growth of 3.1-3.7% in 2022, a decline of 0.7 to 1.3 percentage points due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

According to the WTO study, Russia and Ukraine are significant players in certain production sectors and export a wide range of important commodities. The ongoing conflict has increased world market prices for agricultural and food products such as wheat, soybeans, rice, corn, barley, oats, meat and even beer, all of which have had a impact on food security in poor countries that depend on imports from both countries. countries.


Russia and Ukraine export 45% and 25% of world sunflower and wheat products respectively. Given the countries’ combined market share for palladium, palladium and rhodium shortages could negatively impact the automotive and semiconductor industries. (NNT)



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