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Impact of the International Coffee Agreement's export quota system on the World's coffee market

By Takamasa Akiyama and Panayotis Varangis

Abstract

Ex-post simulations of the global coffee model over the recent period of operation of the International Coffee Agreement's export quota system, (1981-86) show the following. The quota system had a stabilizing effect on world coffee prices in the 1981-85 period. In 1986, when coffee prices increased sharply due to the drought in Brazil and the export quotas were suspended, prices would have been 24 percent higher in the absence of quotas over the 1981-85 period. However, the quotas have reduced export revenues (in real terms), except for such large producers as Brazil and Colombia. These countries gained form the scheme because they face very small or even zero marginal export revenues from increased exports, due to their large market shares. In projections of the coffee market, with and without the export quota system, prices would be substantially lower during the first half of the 1990s if the quota system were suspended in 1990. But prices would recover in the second half of the decade as production and exports declined in lagged response to the very low prices of the first half.Economic Theory&Research,Environmental Economics&Policies,Markets and Market Access,Access to Markets,Crops&Crop Management Systems

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