27 November 2014

Public stockholding for food security purposes


Decision of 27 November 2014

The General Council,

Having regard to paragraph 1 of Article IX of the Marrakesh Agreement establishing the World Trade Organization (the "WTO Agreement");

Conducting the functions of the Ministerial Conference in the interval between meetings pursuant to paragraph 2 of Article IV of the WTO Agreement;

Recognizing the importance of public stockholding for food security purposes for developing countries;

Noting the Ministerial Decision of 7 December 2013 on Public Stockholding for Food Security Purposes (WT/MIN(13)/38-WT/L/913) dated 11 December 2013 (hereinafter referred to as the "Bali Decision");

Decides that:

1. Paragraph 2 of the Bali Decision shall be read as follows: Until a permanent solution1 is agreed and adopted, and provided that the conditions set out in paragraphs 3 to 6 of the Bali Decision are met, Members shall not challenge through the WTO Dispute Settlement Mechanism, compliance of a developing Member with its obligations under Articles 6.3 and 7.2(b) of the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) in relation to support provided for traditional staple food crops2 in pursuance of public stockholding programmes for food security purposes existing as of the date of the Bali Decision,3 that are consistent with the criteria of paragraph 3, footnote 5, and footnote 5 and 6 of Annex 2 to the AoA.

2. If a permanent solution for the issue of public stockholding for food security purposes is not agreed and adopted by the 11th Ministerial Conference, the mechanism referred to in paragraph 1 of the Bali Decision, as set out in paragraph 1 of this Decision, shall continue to be in place until a permanent solution is agreed and adopted.

3. In accordance with paragraph 1.11 of the Bali Ministerial Declaration (WT/MIN(13)/DEC) dated 11 December 2013, the negotiations on a permanent solution on the issue of public stockholding for food security purposes shall be pursued on priority.

4. Members shall engage constructively to negotiate and make all concerted efforts to agree and adopt a permanent solution on the issue of public stockholding for food security purposes by 31 December 2015. In order to achieve such permanent solution, the negotiations on this subject shall be held in the Committee on Agriculture in Special Session ("CoA SS"), in dedicated sessions and in an accelerated time-frame, distinct from the agriculture negotiations under the Doha Development Agenda ("DDA"). The three pillars of the agriculture negotiations, pursuant to the DDA, will continue to progress in the CoA SS.

5. The TNC/General Council shall regularly review the progress of these dedicated sessions.



1. The permanent solution will be applicable to all developing Members.back to text

2. This term refers to primary agricultural products that are predominant staples in the traditional diet of a developing Member.back to text

3. This Decision does not preclude developing Members from introducing programmes of public stockholding for food security purposes in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Agreement on Agriculture.back to text