COVID-19 And Agriculture: A Story Of Resilience

The COVID-19 outbreak and its rapid spread caught many governments and agricultural producers by surprise, prompting immediate policy responses by WTO members. Many of the initial measures were expected to impact negatively on the agricultural sector. But agriculture has in fact shown resilience, with a trade performance that has fared better than other sectors. While overall merchandise trade fell sharply in the first half of 2020, agricultural and food exports increased by 2.5 per cent during the first quarter of the year compared to the same period in 2019, with further increased in March and April. However, the crisis has exerted further downward pressure on food prices, and therefore on producer revenues.