The suspension of the Doha development round of World Trade Organization talks in late July signalled there is serious trouble in finalizing a global trade agreement. The trade liberalization of agriculture was a key component of the talks, and it turned out to be the most contentious.

The immediate trigger for the collapse of the talks was the refusal by the United States to accept cuts to its domestic agricultural subsidies as demanded by other major players, including the European Union, India and Brazil. The EU had earlier refused to reduce its tariff barriers on imported agricultural products, drawing sharp criticism...

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