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AGRICULTURE, TRADE, AND POVERTY IN MOROCCO 169


and consumption, and the reform of the agricultural credit system. Subsidies for irrigation water and for agricultural equipment were maintained, as was the large public investment in water resources.


Producer pricing controls on agricultural commodities were eliminated for hard wheat, barley, maize, rice, milk, and cattle feed. Consumer pricing for dairy products and grains was liberalized. Only the prices of soft wheat flour, sugar, and vegetable oil remained controlled and subsidized by the state. Except for a few sensitive or strategic products (grains, sugar, oil, meat, and dairy products), the marketing channels for agricultural and food products were liberalized. Likewise, importation and exportation operations for agro- food products were liberalized except for sensitive products.


The Global Integration Period


The adoption of a structural adjustment program was only the beginning of a much more thorough reform of the Moroccan economy. Starting in the mid- 1990s, the government signed a number of trade agreements that committed Morocco to greater liberalization in trade, thus consolidating the reforms carried out under the structural adjustment program.


In 1994 Morocco signed the GATT, agreeing to the different commitments incumbent on the developing countries. A year later, like other southern Mediterranean countries, Morocco signed a partnership agreement with the E.U. that provided for the creation of a free trade area between the two partners over a period of 12 years. Trade liberalization through the adhesion of Morocco to free trade areas was also manifest in GAFTA, implemented beginning in 2005. Morocco likewise signed FTAs with the countries of the Agadir initiative (Egypt, Jordan, and Tunisia), the European Free Trade Asso- ciation, Turkey, and the United States (see Table 2.9 and Figure 2.3).3 Some of the more important trade agreements are discussed in the next section.


Trade Agreements GATT and the WTO


The commitments of Morocco under the GATT and WTO are limited to mar- ket access. In fact, Morocco does not provide export subsidies, which are the focus of a commitment for reduction. In addition, its level of aggregate market support is well below the allowable level. Concerning market access, Morocco has changed all NTBs into tariffs. For products such as grains, sugar, milk, meat, and oilseeds and their by-products, which were subject to NTBs,


3 The European Free Trade Association includes Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.


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