So after George Bush wanting Indians and Chinese to eat less (boys, y’all can do with one meal a day now, y’hear me..), it’s the turn of the World Bank to blame India for rising food prices in South Asia (don’t miss the typo in the headline). The mandarins of the World Bank blame export restrictions in India for driving up grain prices, especially those of rice. Ok, at least the World Bank’s view is backed by sound economic logic, and I would assume that they would have data to validate that claim.
Of course, it takes the US Under-Secretary of Commerce to take that cue and go on to warp economic theory – he said while export bans are designed to increase short-term food security, (by) imposing the restrictions these policies make the situation worse. Export restrictions take food off the global market, drive prices higher and discourage farmers from investing in future production, he added.
So, higher prices of grains discourage farmers from investing in future production.
We all know who’s getting the Nobel in Economics this year!
PS: I’m glad that India has taken this step. For the poor in India – urban and rural – the price of food has become prohibitive. Drastic steps were required.
PPS: And for all the people out there telling India to lift export curbs on grains, how about turning some of that preaching in OPEC’s direction? I mean, will their citizens starve if more oil flooded the market?
Damn, I hate sounding jingoistic, but these sanctimonious bastards really piss me off.