NEW DELHI: Geneva-based World Trade Organization (WTO) on Wednesday revised upwards the growth forecast of global merchandise trade in 2021 to 8 per cent after recording a fall of 5.3 per cent last year, amid Covid-19 pandemic.
It said that prospects for a quick recovery in world trade have improved as merchandise trade expanded more rapidly than expected in the second half of last year.
“According to new estimates from the WTO, the volume of world merchandise trade is expected to increase by 8 per cent in 2021 after having fallen 5.3 per cent in 2020, continuing its rebound from the pandemic-induced collapse that bottomed out in the second quarter of last year,” it said in a statement.
It added that trade growth should then slow to 4 per cent in 2022, and the effects of the pandemic will continue to be felt as this pace of expansion would still leave trade below its pre-pandemic trend.
Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said, “Keeping international markets open will be essential for economies to recover from this crisis and a rapid, global and equitable vaccine roll-out is a prerequisite for the strong and sustained recovery we all need.”
In October 2020, the WTO has estimated that the global merchandise trade would record a growth of 7.2 per cent.