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G20 Nation's Commitment to Promote Free Trade in Agri, Food, & Fertilizers
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Expressing concerns about the impact of rising commodity prices on living costs, G20 leaders made a commitment on Saturday to facilitate trade in agriculture, food, and fertilizers that is “open, equitable, predictable, and rules-based,” in accordance with relevant World Trade Organization (WTO) regulations.

The leaders, adopting the New Delhi Declaration of G20 countries, also pledged to assist developing nations in addressing their food security challenges.

They further vowed to collaborate to ensure affordable, safe, nutritious, and healthy diets for all and to progressively realize the right to adequate food. The Declaration emphasized the enhancement of global food security and nutrition in line with the G20 Deccan High-Level Principles on Food Security and Nutrition 2023.

To achieve these objectives, G20 member nations committed to six high-level principles, including the promotion of open and free trade in food and fertilizers. The Declaration explicitly stated: “We commit to facilitate open, fair, predictable, and rules-based agriculture, food, and fertilizer trade, refrain from imposing export bans or restrictions, and reduce market distortions, following relevant WTO rules.”

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It’s worth noting that India has imposed export bans on wheat and certain rice varieties to control food inflation.

In addition to advocating for free trade, G20 leaders pledged to monitor two additional commodities, fertilizers and vegetable oils, under the Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS) and the Group on Earth Observations Global Agricultural Monitoring (GEOGLAM). This step aims to enhance transparency and prevent food price fluctuations.

Furthermore, they expressed their support for AMIS’ work on fertilizers, its expansion to include vegetable oils, and collaboration with early warning systems.

The Declaration also stressed the importance of increasing access to fertilizers and agricultural inputs while promoting their efficient use. This includes strengthening local fertilizer production and improving soil health.

Acknowledging the outcomes of the 12th G20 Meeting of Agriculture Chief Scientists (MACS), G20 member countries committed to promoting research cooperation on climate-resilient and nutritious grains, such as millets, quinoa, sorghum, and traditional crops like rice, wheat, and maize.

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They also pledged to accelerate innovation and investments aimed at increasing agricultural productivity, reducing food loss and waste throughout the value chain, and improving marketing and storage. These efforts are aimed at building more sustainable and climate-resilient agriculture and food systems.

Additionally, the G20 leaders recognized the continued potential for volatility in global food and energy markets, even though prices have decreased from their peak levels. They took note of the G20 Report on Macroeconomic Impacts of Food and Energy Insecurity and their Implications for the Global Economy.

Finally, the Declaration expressed anticipation for a significant replenishment of resources for the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) by IFAD members at the end of the year to support IFAD’s efforts in combating food insecurity.

It also highlighted the importance of ensuring women’s food security, nutrition, and well-being, with a commitment to inclusive, sustainable, and resilient agriculture and food systems and accessible, affordable, safe, and nutritious food.

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The leaders vowed to promote innovation in agri-value chains and systems for women farmers and support gender-responsive and age-sensitive nutrition and food system interventions, using innovative financing mechanisms and social protection systems to combat hunger and malnutrition.

The Declaration underscored the crucial role of women’s food security and nutrition in individual and community development and overall well-being.

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