The Economics of the Agricultural Sector


Agricultural policy is often considered a politically sensitive subject. The entire responsibility for the structural development of this branch of economic activity has been assumed in practice by the political decision makers. The political battle concerning the regulations through which the political authorities try to influence the economic and technical development of agriculture has been intensive. The policies finally adopted are characterized by compromises. Accordingly, the prirnary object of the debate has been what possibilities there are of guiding a necessary structural change within the framework of a very comprehensive regulation system.

The main emphasis of this book is put on the effects of price policies. The efficiency of Swedish agriculture is related to the prices in the world market. It can also be compared to the efficiency in other European countries. The discussions in the last few years concerning a common Nordic market for agricultural products have brought forward the possibilities of a further integration in the area of agricultural policy. More or less reasonable standards for judging the profitability and socioeconomic casts of agriculture are subjects of thorough examination.

In spite of a rapid structural change, productivity and profitability are low in agriculture. The existing structure of firms, which means small land holdings and small numbers of animals for most units, does not permit an even approximately optimal utilization of capital and labor. It is claimed in this book that a far-reaching change of the structure of firms is the most effective means of increasing the productivity of Swedish agriculture.

Interdisciplinary European Studies

The European Union and the Return of the Nation State


This book explores the complex and ever-changing relationship between the European Union and its member states. The recent surge in tension in this relationship has been prompted by the actions of some member state governments as they question fundamental EU values and principles and refuse to implement common decisions seemingly on the basis of narrowly defined national interests.

About the book


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