Texas Tech Cotton Economics Institute Releases Online Foreign Subsidies Database

Written by Samantha Yates Borgstedt

Texas Tech University’s Cotton Economics Research Institute (CERI) has created an online database that compiles, organizes and presents data on domestic subsidies and trade restrictions on key agricultural product producing countries around the world.

 The online database, partially funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Cotton Inc., is an updated version of CERI-SR07-01, CERI’s report on international crop policies conducted in February of 2007.

 “We have published a printed version of our foreign subsidies report for several years now,” said Darren Hudson, director of the CERI. “That was very helpful in getting complete information out. But, the online version will provide information to a broader audience about the extent and use of subsidies globally, not just the U.S.”

The online database allows users to search objective information compiled from published, government documentation concerning seven commodities found in 21 countries in an easily navigable structure.

Detailed information about subsidies and trade policies used in each country for each commodity can be found in graph, text and table format. Unlike other sources of subsidy data, CERI’s database also presents information on input subsidies that are normally omitted, but very relevant to the subsidy debate. These summaries are as accurate as possible at publication and updated every two years, with the current version being accurate as of 2009.

“Hopefully this access will allow people to gather factual information on subsidies,” Hudson said, “and not just rely on hearsay and speculation.”

For more information and to view the CERI online foreign subsidies database, visit http://www.depts.ttu.edu/ceri.

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CONTACT: Darren Hudson, director, Cotton Economics Research Institute, Texas Tech University at (806) 742-1921 ext.272, or Darren.hudson@ttu.edu.