Services Trade Liberalization and Food Security: Exploring the links in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)

By Alexander Chandra, Herjuno Kinasih on February 11, 2013

Food security remains a major policy concern for many governments the world over.

Global climate change, rising demand for food as a result of population growth, international food price volatility, poverty, and conflicts are some of major contributors to food insecurity. In recent years, there has been an increased recognition that barriers to trade (particularly with respect to agricultural and food products), a lack of investment in agriculture and related infrastructure, and insufficient regional cooperation and coordination are also factors.This paper addresses the potential role that services trade liberalization could play in promoting food security. Using the case study of regional cooperation pursued by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the authors argue that food security could serve as an important rationale for the Association to deepen its services sector reform process. This is particularly so given both the chronic food insecurity problem in many parts of Southeast Asia and the half-hearted willingness to deepen the process of services sector reform in the region.

Report details

Food and Agriculture
Asia and Pacific
Focus area
IISD, 2013