U.S. Agricultural Exports Strong Growth Likely But U.S. Export Assistance Programs' Contribution Uncertain
GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE WASHINGTON DC NATIONAL SECURITY AND INTERNATIONAL A FFAIRS DIV
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Domestic agricultural policy in the United States was significantly changed by the 1996 Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform FAIR Act. Although it continues to provide income support to farmers for the next 5 years, FAIR reduces the governments role in regulating the production of bulk commodities such as wheat and corn and provides the agricultural sector and farmers enhanced flexibility to respond to domestic and international market conditions. We assessed 1 the way in which FAIR will likely affect U.S. agricultural exports and 2 the continued relevance of U.S. agricultural export assistance programs. To address FAIRS potential impact on U.S. exports, we interviewed a wide range of U.S. and competitor nation agricultural experts, analyzed available studies and reports authored by some of these experts, and reviewed and discussed the agricultural trade components of various economic models. To evaluate the programs relevance, we reviewed both qualitative and quantitative evidence regarding the extent to which the programs benefit the overall U.S. economy, benefit the U.S. agricultural sector and specific U.S. commodities, counter competitor nations agricultural export programs, and promote U.S. trade negotiating objectives.
- Agricultural Economics
- Administration and Management