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IV. trade policies by sector - page 4 / 50

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Switzerland and LiechtensteinWT/TPR/S/208 Page 93

2.

Agricultural Policy 2007 (AP 2007), adopted by Parliament in 2003, has been Switzerland's main policy initiative in the sector during the review period, leading to changes in the Federal Law on agriculture and various ordinances.  Under AP 2007, Switzerland has continued the gradual move away from price support to direct payments.  AP 2007 also provided new investment assistance measures and financial assistance for redeployment away from agriculture.  Specific policy measures introduced under AP 2007 have focussed mainly on domestic support and include:  the transition to a more flexible milk market through, inter alia, the gradual abolition of production quotas (section (iii));  conversion programmes to address overproduction in the wine and horticultural subsectors;  a gradual switch to auctioning in the allocation of meat quotas (Chapter III(2)(iii));  and modified provisions for direct payments (e.g. an increased emphasis on ecological direct payments).

3.

The successor to AP2007 is Agricultural Policy 2011 (AP 2011), which runs from 2008 to 2011.  Its key element is the further conversion of product-specific price support into non-specific direct payments.  Price support is to be more than halved, whereas export subsidies on basic agricultural products are to be phased out by January 2010 (July 2009 for potatoes and dairy products).  Import tariffs for feedingstuff are to be significantly reduced.  For the four-year period from  2008 to 2011, total support for agriculture is set at Sw F 13,499 million.

4.

Agriculture (major division 1 of ISIC, Rev.2) has remained the most tariff-protected sector of the customs union, with a simple average tariff of 22.6%, down from 28.6% in 2004. Using the WTO definition, the simple average is 29.3%, down from 36.2% in 2004.  Tariffs are particularly high in the meat and dairy subsectors, reaching 1,469% on live donkeys, mules, and hinnies (section (iii)).  

5.

Switzerland's outlays for direct payments have remained high, attaining Sw F 2,500 million in 2006 (Table IV.3).  Growth of domestic support has slowed down since 2003.  According to Switzerland's last notification on domestic support, the total aggregate measurement of support (AMS) was Sw F 3,044 million in 2004.1  The ceiling for such support, under WTO commitments, is Sw F 4,257 million.  According to the authorities, more recent data on domestic support are not available.

Table IV.3

Swiss outlays for direct payments, 2000-06

(Sw F million, unless otherwise indicated)

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Total

2,142.4

2,325.0

2,426.1

2,458.7

2,470.5

2,485.8

2,499.6

General direct payments

1,803.7

1,929.1

1,994.8

1,999.1

1,993.9

1,999.6

2,007.2

Area payments

1,186.8

1,303.9

1,316.2

1,318.0

1,317.8

1,319.6

1,319.1

Holding of roughage eating animals

258.5

268.3

283.2

287.7

286.1

292.0

301.2

Holding of livestock under difficult conditions

251.6

250.3

289.6

287.3

284.0

282.2

281.3

Farming on steep slopes

96.7

96.6

95.8

95.6

95.3

94.8

94.2

Wine cultivation on steep slopes

10.1

10.0

10.1

10.5

10.7

11.1

11.4

Ecological direct payments

361.3

412.7

452.4

476.6

494.7

506.9

518.2

Ecological payment

279.0

329.9

359.4

381.3

398.1

409.3

420.2

Ecological compensation

108.1

118.4

122.4

124.9

125.7

126.0

127.0

Ecological Quality Ordinance

17.2

0.0

8.9

14.6

23.0

27.4

30.3

Extensive cereals and rapeseed farming

33.4

32.5

31.9

31.3

30.8

31.5

31.1

Organic farming

12.2

23.5

25.5

27.1

28.0

28.6

28.7

Particularly animal-friendly holding of productive animals

108.1

155.5

170.7

183.4

190.7

195.8

203.2

Summer pasturing

81.2

80.5

89.6

91.4

91.1

91.6

91.7

Water protection

1.1

2.3

3.5

4.0

5.5

5.9

6.3

Direct payments per farm ('000 Sw F)

35.7

38.9

41.8

42.7

43.3

44.1

44.9

Note: A comparison with the State account is not possible due to different definitions of year of payment.  

1 WTO document G/AG/N/CHE/38, 28 February 2007.

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