This report examines the different channels through which trade openness (and reforms to achieve it)can affect a country’s food security. The overall conclusion is that trade openness has a positive netimpact on food security, although specific constituencies, including some poor households, could seetheir immediate food security threatened by the withdrawal of trade protection. The challenge forpolicymakers is to design flanking policies which enable countries to reap aggregate gains yet mitigatespecific losses. Those policies include social protection and the provision of risk management tools,
allied with investments in productivity so that average incomes rise to the extent that any adverse shockto incomes is unlikely to jeopardise food security. Developing countries are increasingly able to deploysuch targeted instruments. Lessons are also being learned with respect to the political economy of tradereform, such that changes can be introduced in a way that minimises adjustment stresses and helps buildthe consensus needed to lock in the benefits of trade policy reform.