WTO says global trade rebounding, sees 2017 growth of 3

Remigio Civitarese
Settembre 22, 2017

The improved outlook is based on the fact that intra-regional shipments boosted Asian trade and import demand in North America recovered after falling a year ago.

Global merchandise trade is expected to grow at a higher 3.6 per cent in 2017, compared with 1.6 per cent increase previous year, on the back of resurgent Asian trade flows, according to revised estimates published by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) on Thursday.

Growth in global trade for 2017 was earlier projected at 2.4 per cent by WTO, which has now attributed the improved outlook to a resurgence of Asian trade flows.

Geneva: The World Trade Organization on Thursday boosted its forecast for global trade growth in 2017 as commerce rebounded strongly, but cautioned that major threats could still derail the positive trajectory.

It also said the rapid pace of trade growth this year is "unlikely" to be sustained next year for a number of reasons.

"The improved outlook for trade is welcome news, but substantial risks that threaten the world economy remain in place and could easily undermine any trade recovery", WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo said. "First, trade growth in 2018 will not be measured against a weak base year, as is the case this year".

Factors bound to impact global trade include the expected tightening of monetary policy in developed nations and the reining in of easy credit and fiscal expansion in China where the government looks eager to prevent the economy from overheating.

It added the 3.6 per cent growth would represent a substantial improvement on the lacklustre 1.3 per cent increase in 2016.

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