chapter  16
20 Pages

Agricultural Policy Developments After China’s Accession to the WTO

WithFrancis Tuan, Agapi Somwaru, Xinshen Diao

China submitted its application for membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 1986. Upon accession to the WTO, China committed to reducing trade-distorting barriers and practices that fall into three main categories: nontariff trade barriers, domestic agricultural support, and export subsidies. Tariff-rate quotas (TRQs) are established for a number of bulk commodities, including wheat, com, rice, cotton, and soybean oil. An important commitment associated with the TRQs is that China's government agreed to extend a portion of its trading rights to non-state trade entities. China officially became a WTO member in December 2001 and committed to reducing policy distortions that fall into three main categories: nontariff trade barriers, domestic agricultural support, and export subsidies. China's announcement of biotech regulations and food safety requirements, as well as delayed TRQ allotments to small wheat millers, cut soybean imports and prevented small flour millers from importing wheat in 2002 and 2003.