Swiss Trade and Investment Policies for more Food Security?

Friday, 17. October 2014 | 8:30 Uhr


Christian Häberli


World Trade Institute


Christian Häberli, Ph.D., Senior Research Fellow at the World Trade Institute, demonstrated to the participants the impact of Switzerland’s trade and investment policies on prices in the Swiss market. „Our farmers are often not competitive. The reason is that in Switzerland, we still have the highest tariffs and subsidies in the world. This prevents or slows international competition,“ said Häberli.

Additionally, these barriers also prevent trade and investment policies that would promote open markets. Development policy, which would offer African farmers tools to become more competitive, and supply policy, which would fight speculators, are hampered. The paralyzing effect of Swiss agricultural policy is exacerbated by new ‘food security subsidies’ in the name of ‘food sovereignty’. Two upcoming popular initiatives will exacerbate this even further.

Find out what approach Häberli suggests in the video of his presentation which he held at the Academia Engelberg Foundation’s 13th Dialogue on Science.

Christian Häberli

Christian Häberli is a Senior Research Fellow at the WTI/NCCR (Bern University) and a lecturer and consultant in Europe, Asia, Africa, and in the Americas. He has produced over 50 publications on trade, agriculture and development policy issues, more recently with a focus on food security from a trade and investment perspective. He graduated in 1977 with a PhD on the subject of African Investment Law (Basel University). Christian also has a degree in Development Sciences from Geneva (1975) and in Theology from Bern (2009).

His professional career has included working for the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the Swiss Government, involving assignments in Madagascar, Thailand, Nepal and Switzerland. He also served as trade negotiator for Switzerland in the GATT and the WTO during the Uruguay and the Doha Rounds (1986 to 2007) and chaired the WTO Committee on Agriculture (Regular Session, 2005-07).

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