The recovery in world trade promises to be strong but uneven, with the relatively positive short-term outlook clouded by regional disparities and delayed vaccination schedules, especially in poor countries, the World Organization said on Wednesday. trade (WTO).
Prospects for a rapid recovery in world trade have improved with merchandise trade growing faster than expected in the second half of last year, according to new WTO estimates.
As for world merchandise trade, it is expected to increase by 8.0% in 2021 after declining 5.3% in 2020, continuing its recovery after the collapse due to the pandemic that hit it bottom in the second quarter of last year, notes the organization.
According to the WTO, trade growth will likely slow to 4.0% in 2022, with total global trade volume remaining below the pre-pandemic trend.
Global GDP at market exchange rates is expected to grow 5.1% in 2021 and 3.8% in 2022, after contracting 3.8% in 2020.
The WTO also notes that trade in goods in nominal dollars declined by 7% in 2020, while exports of commercial services fell by 20%.
On the other hand, the fall in oil prices led to a 35% contraction in fuel trade in 2020.
Travel services, meanwhile, plunged 63% in 2020 and are not expected to fully recover until the pandemic subsides.
“The strong recovery in world trade since the middle of last year has helped cushion the shock of the pandemic for individuals, businesses and economies,” said WTO Director General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. Keeping international markets open will be essential for economies to recover from this crisis, and rapid, global and equitable vaccine implementation is a prerequisite for the strong and sustained recovery in which we all need, a she said.
For the Director General of the WTO, “the ramping up of vaccine production will allow businesses and schools to reopen faster and help economies recover, but as long as a large number of people and countries are excluded from sufficient access to vaccines, growth will be inhibited and this will risk reversing the global recovery in health and economic terms. “