European Agriculture towards 2030 - Perspectives for further East-West Integration

Event

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155. Seminar of European Association of Agricultural Economics (EAAE)

Date and location

19-21 September 2016
The seminar will take place in Kiev, Ukraine.

On September 21 we plan a joint day with the organizers of the Large Farm Management Conference. This day will conclude the EAAE seminar. The Large Farm Management Conference is planned to continue until September, 24.

Theme

Over the last 20 years, agricultural production and structures in The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) (a cluster of countries covering a portion of the territory of the former Soviet Union) have been very dynamic. Declining trends in the early stages of their economic transition have turned to growth, initiated and supported by land privatisation, government budget support and value chain developments. The latter occurring, in part, through the engagement of foreign investment and the accompanying transfer of knowledge and technology. New trade relations have been established as countries like Russia and Ukraine became WTO members and also as part of the EU’s Neighbourhood Policy. However, since the global financial crisis of 2008 and due to sluggish institutional and policy reforms, agricultural markets have developed slowly in the CIS.

The overall agriculture potential of the CIS is considered huge. However, although countries like Russia and Ukraine play an important role in international cereal markets as exporters, productivity in these countries is far below potential agro-ecological attainable yields. At the same time there is a large supply of underutilised or abandoned agricultural land in the CIS. The literature points to socio-economic factors and policy environments that are responsible for production levels remaining behind biophysical potential, as these may hamper farmers from adopting improved technologies and practices in order to make the best possible and most efficient use of inputs for producing the most profitable agricultural products. Nevertheless, the possible contributions of these factors and policies to the ability of CIS countries to reach their agricultural potential have not been systematically analysed.
If these countries could realise their agricultural potential, it would have important consequences for their position on international markets as well as for the bilateral trade relations between the EU and these neighbouring countries. However, current political tensions centring on the Ukrainian crisis have disrupted East-West trade in Europe, and consequently the integration process intended by the EU with countries on its eastern border has also been significantly affected. These developments raise a number of questions.  For example, how are agricultural development and markets in Europe affected in the medium-term by the current situation of stagnation in Europe’s East-West trade relations? What could be the contribution of trade and foreign investment to further exploit the assumed agricultural potential in the CIS? What are the institutional infrastructures necessary for a market-driven agricultural system in CIS and what role should policy play in helping to create this? What would be the effects of further market integration on bilateral trade in agrifood products between the EU and its Eastern neighbours? What will be the impact on the agrifood sectors in the East and West if markets further disintegrate?

Background

In the framework of its European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP), the EU is aiming to strengthen its political and economic relations with former Soviet Union republics. A key instrument in achieving this objective is to negotiate Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreements (DCFTA). A DCFTA concerns not only the liberalisation of trade in all areas, but also the harmonisation of trade-related legislation with EU standards and acquis communautaire. To date, the EU has signed DCFTA’s with Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. Yet, the current political tensions centring on the Ukrainian crisis may disrupt the intended East-West integration process. Increasing strains between the EU and Russia in the summer of 2014 culminated in reciprocal trade sanctions. To date, a range of EU food products are still banned from the Russian market. With respect to food, Russia’s objective is to enhance self-sufficiency by increasing domestic production of agricultural commodities. Clearly, there is significant potential for increasing production through expanding land for agricultural purposes, by achieving higher yields and increasing efficiencies in the food supply chain, in Russia as well as other countries in the region. The question is, though, whether or not policies as currently applied and the sector’s institutional environment are effective in helping realise this potential.Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan have worked on establishing closer economic ties for a number of years. The Customs Union between the three countries, in force since 2010, was a first step to the creation of the EurAsia Economic Union (EAEE) which came into being on the 1st of January 2015. Armenia has already accessed to the EAEE and the Kyrgyzstan accession treaty awaits ratification. The EAEE will be an integrated single market of 175 million consumers and have a combined GDP (in PPP terms) of 4 trillion US$, about one fourth of that of the EU.These developments raise the question whether or not the division between the two trade blocks will increase further. The economic consequences of such a scenario can be examined in terms of the benefits foregone.  These benefits could be those associated with further European integration for the development of the agrifood sector in the East and the West. Other questions that emerge include how do we explore the potential of agricultural production in the East and how can competitive supply chains in food and biomass be built in an integrated European market?The seminar intends to discuss the impacts of both short-term and long-term developments in the international agro-food trade and on the domestic markets, the impacts of policy support measures to enhance efficiency and competitiveness of the agrifood supply chains, and the role of technology, innovation and trade policies in agrifood production and trade developments.

Objectives

The seminar intends to discuss and to analyse the state-of-the art in economic analysis of the impact of different scenarios of European integration (including a further divide into two blocs) on agri-food markets. How would a (dis)integrated Europe affect agricultural markets, value chain development and trade? This includes an analysis of agricultural and trade policies, and incentives that would enhance the integration and efficiency of value chains in food and agriculture, both in the EU and in its Eastern neighbours. It also includes a thorough understanding of the agricultural potential, both in biophysical and economic/institutional terms, next to research on consumer demand patterns.
The seminar offers a platform to exchange ideas and to generate an integrated view of agricultural potential, value chain development and public policy in the broad European context. As current topics of agricultural, industrial and trade policy shall be addressed, the seminar is not only relevant for a scientific community but certainly also for decision makers in business, politics and NGOs -including the donor community.

Topics

The seminar will be based on oral presentations in plenary sessions by invited speakers and in parallel workgroups with contributed papers. Expected topics to be covered by the papers include the following items:

  • Potential of agricultural production in the CIS and factors hampering realising this potential
  • Food consumption patterns, market segmentation and potential for production specialisation in the EU and the CIS
  • The performance of value chains and options for improving supply chain efficiencies and product differentiation in the region
  • Trade potential and the role of technology and institutional innovations in enhancing trade
  • The impact of agricultural and macroeconomic policy on perspectives for further East-West integration

Call for papers

The seminar invites an international audience in the fields of agricultural economics, institutional economics, industrial organisation, consumer economics, marketing, policy assessment and any other field referring to the subject. Speakers to be invited include CEOs of food processors, key representatives of EU or national authorities, academia and NGOs.
In order to organize the seminar in the best possible manner, participants who intend to contribute a paper are requested to e-mail an abstract of maximal 2 pages (about 500 words) in English by April 1, 2016. The abstract should indicate: 1) the question addressed, 2) the concepts, theories and methodology used, 3) the results obtained and 4) relevant topic (preferably from the list above).
Authors of accepted abstracts will be notified by June 1, 2016. The deadline for the final submission of accepted papers is September 1, 2015. A selection of papers will be invited to undergo a referee process for a special issue for a journal.

Language

The official language of the seminar will be English

Organisation

The seminar will be organised jointly by the Thϋnen Institute (Braunschweig, Germany) and the Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consulting (IER in the following) in Kiev (Ukraine).

International Program Committee:

Martin Banse (Thünen Institute, Braunschweig, Germany)
Siemen van Berkum (Wageningen UR, The Hague, The Netherlands)
Olena Borodina (Institute for Economics and Forecasting, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine)
Stephan von Cramon-Taubadel (University of Göttingen, Germany)
Serhiy Demyanenko (Kyiv National Economic University, Ukraine)
Jolanta Drozdz (Lietuvos Agrarines Ekonomikos Institutas, Vilnius, Lithuania)
Emil Erjavec (University of Ljubljana, Slovenia)
Imre Ferto (Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary)
Linde Götz (IAMO, Halle, Germany)
Harald Grethe (University Hohenheim, Stuttgart/Hohenheim, Germany)
Petr Havlik (IIASA, Laxemburg, Austria)Ulrich Koester (University of Kiel, Germany)
Olena Kovtun (National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine)
Ekaterina Krivonos (FAO, Rome, Italy)
Alex Lissitsa (President of the Ukrainian Agribusiness Club, Kiev, Ukraine)
Olga Melyukhina (OECD, Paris, France)
Willi Meyers (University of Missouri, USA)
Martin Petrick (IAMO, Halle, Germany)
Sébastien Poulain (EuroQuality, Brussels, Belgium)
Petra Salamon (Thünen Institute, Braunschweig, Germany)
Axel Wolz (IAMO, Halle, Germany)
Olexandr Zhemoyda (National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine, Kiev, Ukraine)
Sergiy Zorya (World Bank, Bangkok, Thailand)

Local Organising Committee:

Oleg Nivievskyi (IER, Ukraine)
Victoria Zhovtenko (IER, Ukraine)
Alex Lissitsa (Ukrainian Agribusiness Club –UCAB, Ukraine)
Oleksa Stepaniuk (IER, Ukraine)
Emil Erjavec (University of Ljubljana, Slovenia)
Oleksandr Zhemoyda (National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine)
Olena Kovtun (National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine)
Serhiy Demyanenko (Kyiv National Economic University, Ukraine)
Oleksandr Erankin (Kyiv National Economic University, Ukraine)

Registration

Participants are kindly asked to pre-register by March 1, 2016. Pre-registration and registration will be available through the seminar website at: [to be announced]

Participation fees

Participants of an EAAE-Seminar in 2016 have to be member of the EAAE for the year 2016. For those not yet member, the EAAE membership fee is 100 Euro for the period 2016 – 2018 to be paid in advance of registration, see http://www.eaae.org/Site2014/index.php/contact--subscribe/become-a-member

Registration will be possible until September 1, but reduced rate subscription is offered until July 1, 2016.

EAAE-Members

Before July 1     € 170    (reduced rate of € 130 for students)
After July 1       € 250

Fees include lunches on both seminar days, dinner on the first day, lunches on both days, coffee/tea during the breaks and a USB-stick containing the conference contributions. Accommodation is not included.

Important dates

Abstract Submission: April 1, 2016
Author Notification: June 1, 2016
Early registration deadline: July 1, 2016
Deadline Full Papers: September 1, 2016
Deadline registration: September 1, 2016

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