Agricultural Policies in OECD Countries 2010

At a Glance

image of Agricultural Policies in OECD Countries 2010

This report is a unique source of up-to date estimates of support to agriculture. It provides an overview of agricultural support in the OECD areas, complemented by individual chapters on the development of support in all OECD countries. Agricultural Policies in OECD Countries: At a Glance is published every other year, alternating with the longer report, Agricultural Policies in OECD Countries: Monitoring and Evaluation. This book includes StatLinks, URLs under graphs and tables linking Excel® files with the underlying data.

This 2010 edition finds that in 2009, support to farmers in OECD countries accounted for 22% of the farmers’ gross receipts (%PSE). This was slightly up from 21% in 2008, and marks a return to the level shown in 2007. This is the first increase in support levels in five years, after a steady decline that began in 2004. Higher commodity prices in 2007 and 2008 were behind falls in the measured support for those years, but in 2009 these prices returned to the same level as in 2007. 

Despite a long-term reduction in both the level of support and the share of the most distorting forms of support, the latter still dominates in the majority of OECD countries. Some countries have taken clear steps towards reducing the level of support and/or implementing more decoupled support, while others have lagged behind. In some countries, support is becoming increasingly conditional on famers following specified production practices as part of their government’s pursuit of broader policy objectives. 

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The relative importance of agriculture in the Israeli economy has declined over the last two decades, with its share in total employment and in domestic product falling to around 2-3%. At the same time, it accounts for over 50% of annual water consumption and the use of water resources is the dominant environmental issue for the sector. Israel is unique amongst developed countries in that land and water resources are nearly all state-owned. Co-operative communities, principally the kibbutz and moshav, dominate agricultural production accounting for about 80% of agricultural output. Growing labour productivity was a key contributor to the almost two-fold increase in total factor productivity in agriculture in 1990-2008, much stronger than in any other sector of the Israeli economy. The agro-food sector is strongly integrated with international markets with exports dominated by fruit and vegetables and imports by land-intensive cereals and oilseeds and selected other commodities such as beef and sugar. The negative balance of trade in agro-food products tended to increase in recent years.

English Also available in: French

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