Article 13 (“due restraint”) of the Agriculture
Agreement protects countries using subsidies which comply with the agreement
from being challenged under other WTO agreements. Without this “peace
clause”, countries would have greater freedom to take action against each
others’ subsidies, under the Subsidies and Countervailing Measures Agreement
and related provisions. The peace clause is due to expire at the end of
UPDATED 1 DECEMBER 2004
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This briefing document explains current agricultural issues raised before and in the current negotiations. It has been prepared by the Information and Media Relations Division of the WTO Secretariat to help public understanding about the agriculture negotiations. It is not an official record of the negotiations.
Some countries want it extended so that
they can enjoy some degree of “legal security”, ensuring that they will
not be challenged so long as they comply with their commitments on export
subsidies and domestic support under the Agriculture Agreement.
Some others want it to lapse as part of
their overall objective to see agriculture brought under general WTO
disciplines that deal with governments’ ability to take action against
Some countries have proposed variants.
Canada would like to see “Green Box” domestic supports freed from the
possibility of countervailing action under the Subsidies Agreement. India
proposes that something like the peace clause should be retained but only for
developing countries, so that some subsidies are free from the possibility of
Proposals referring to the peace clause submitted in Phase 1
The US-EU draft includes the peace clause under issues still to be discussed. Norway calls for it to be continued. The Pérez del Castillo text lists it among issues still to be discussed. The Derbez draft proposes extending the peace clause by an unspecified number of months.