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WTO quarterly trade growth indicator at nine-year low

WTO quarterly trade growth indicator at nine-year low

GENEVA: The World Trade Organisation’s quarterly outlook indicator showed on Tuesday that global goods trade growth was likely to remain weak, with a reading of 96.3, unchanged from February, the lowest since 2010.

“The outlook for trade could worsen further if heightened trade tensions are not resolved or if macroeconomic policy fails to adjust to changing circumstances,” the WTO said, adding that the latest indicator did not reflect major trade moves in the last few days.

A score of below 100 in the indicator, a composite measure of seven drivers of trade, signals below-trend growth in global goods trade, which the WTO’s April forecast estimated at 2.6 per cent this year, the mid-point of a forecast range from 1.3pc to 4.0pc.

But WTO warned that there were several scenarios that could pull trade growth towards the bottom end of that range, including worsening trade tensions between the United States and China, or Britain leaving the European Union without a deal on their future relationship.