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Abstract

The United States advocates competitive and efficient world markets. This report explores what agricultural competitiveness means by using three different measures: market share, relative export advantage, and revealed competitiveness. Each measure has a special use. This analysis shows that the most competitive agricultural exporters are usually those with the least government intervention. It also shows that the United States is most competitive in agricultural commodities such as soybeans and coarse grains that receive relatively little government protection. This apparent conflict between competitiveness and protection suggests that openness makes markets perform better, increasing global economic efficiency.

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