Foreign subsidies and other direct and indirect government supports have earned sugar the distinction of being the world’s most distorted commodity market. The American Sugar Alliance (ASA) has undertaken a multi-year effort to document foreign government intervention in sugar and catalogue the various methods of support employed. This information is intended, in part, to assist U.S. trade negotiators in identifying areas for reform, as many countries do not report their support measures on an accurate and timely basis, as required by the World Trade Organization.
While the countries below have some of the greatest impact, market-distorting policies are commonplace in most countries around the world. ASA compiles a yearly report on country-by-country sugar subsidy developments using USDA’s Global Agricultural Information Network reports.
Still, America imports more sugar than most other countries. Existing trade deals provide preferential access to 41 countries. And U.S. sugar producers do not receive direct payments. U.S. producers want to eliminate all global sugar subsidies and let a true free market take shape.