U.S. subsidies to cotton growers totaled $3.7 billion last year, three times U.S. foreign aid to Africa. These subsidies depress world cotton prices by an estimated 10-20 percent, reducing the income of thousands of poor farmers in West Africa, Central and South Asia, and poor countries around the world. In West Africa alone, where cotton is a critical cash crop for many small-scale and near-subsistence farmers, annual income losses for cotton growers are about $250 million a year.
Source: Global Economic Prospects 2004: Realizing the Development Promise of the Doha Agenda. World Bank Report, accessed November 10, 2004 at http://www.worldbank.org/prospects/gep2004/full.pdf