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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:West Africa Versus the United States on Cotton Subsidies: How, Why and What Next?
Author:Heinisch, Elinor L.
Year:2006
Periodical:Journal of Modern African Studies
Volume:44
Issue:2
Period:June
Pages:251-274
Language:English
Geographic terms:West Africa
Benin
Burkina Faso
Mali
United States
Subjects:cotton
subsidies
international trade
Agriculture, Natural Resources and the Environment
Economics and Trade
international relations
Politics and Government
Development and Technology
Link:http://ejournals.ebsco.com/direct.asp?ArticleID=43F6827A4FBC2BB3F28E
Abstract:Developing countries face considerable disadvantages in trade disputes with their more powerful and wealthier counterparts. Nonetheless, Benin, Burkina Faso and Mali successfully challenged US cotton subsidies, a watershed event in international trade relations. This article explores how the West African governments and cotton farmers confronted US policy, why they succeeded, and the campaign's likely implications. Drawing on interviews with representatives in West Africa and Geneva, public statements, documents filed with the World Trade Organisation (WTO), media coverage, and materials from non-governmental organizations, the author analyses the behaviour of four key actors behind this initiative: cotton farmers, producers' unions, governments and the international financial institutions. Tactics included using the WTO's trade-dispute mechanisms, deploying many spokespeople with common messages, enlisting powerful allies, and using the media. The West African campaign is an example of politically weak countries effectively exploiting the liberal economic principles of multilateral institutions to challenge protectionist policies in the industrialized world. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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