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International Trade Growth to slow in 2022: UNCTAD Global Trade Update

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Global trade growth likely to be subdued in 2022In accordance with the Global Trade Update by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the global trade growth will slow in the Q1 (first quarter) of 2022. It is due to macroeconomic trends like persistent inflation in the United States (US) and concerns related to China’s real estate sector.

  • In 2022 there will be an increase in global demand for environmentally sustainable products.

Key Points:

i.Globally, there will be marginally positive growth rates for trade in goods and services. The trade values will be at levels similar to Q32021.

ii.The report flagged the record levels of global debt, which are likely to intensify due to mounting inflationary pressures.

2021 Trend:

i.Overall, the value of global trade reached a record level of $28.5 trillion in 2021, which is an increase of 25% in 2020 and 13% higher compared to 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic.  Notably, trade in goods increased more strongly in the developing world than in developed countries.

  • For developing countries, exports were about 30% higher than in 2020, compared with 15% for wealthier nations.
  • The growth was higher in commodity-exporting regions, as commodity prices increased.

ii.Trade in services rose by $50 billion to reach $1.6 trillion, just above pre-pandemic levels.

iii.This positive trend for international trade in 2021 was mainly due to an increase in commodity prices, subsiding pandemic restrictions and a strong recovery in demand due to economic stimulus packages.

Recent Related News:

On 19 October 2021, the UNCTAD awarded the ‘United Nations Investment Promotion Awards’ to investment promotion agencies (IPAs) from Costa Rica, the Netherlands, and the Republic of Korea for excellence in promoting investment in health sectors.

About United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD):

Establishment– 1964
Secretary-General– Rebeca Grynspan (Hailing from Costa Rica, she is the first woman and Central American to serve as UNCTAD’s secretary-general)
Headquarters– Geneva, Switzerland
Member Countries – 195 Members