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Abstract

European Union banana policies do not make economic sense, and hence criticism of these policies is justified. Some facts should, though, be remembered. If the EU had chosen free trade in bananas when the Single Market was established, certain producers both inside and outside the EU would have lost income, and it proved politically impossible to choose direct financial compensation. Also, the quantitative implications of the new EU banana regime may be less than sometimes assumed, as trade has not been reduced very much. The WTO's role is not to judge the economic merits of these policies, but their legal justification.

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