Challenges in Modeling the Effects of Trade Agreements on the Agricultural Sector

Patrick C. Westhoff, Jacinto F. Fabiosa, John C. Beghin, William H. Meyers
April 2004  [04-WP 358]

Major issues and challenges encountered in modeling and analyzing agricultural and trade policy reforms are reviewed. We focus on the modeling approach and pay special attention to the type and scope of the models, the calibration of a realistic baseline scenario, the representation of the reform agreement, the use of extra-model information, the choice of metrics to measure reform impacts, and emerging issues in policy modeling. Existing solutions and unresolved issues are examined. We stress the complementarity of various modeling approaches in assessing policy reforms and the importance of helping users understand the limitations of the chosen approach.

Keywords: agricultural policy, economic modeling, trade agreements.

JEL classification: Q17, Q18, F13

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