WTO’s global trade outlook is bleak, even before the virus

Business

WTO’s global trade outlook is bleak, even before the virus

Below-trend performance in early 2020 could become much worse as the effects of new coronavirus spread

Philip Blenkinsop

Growth of global trade in goods is likely to remain weak in early 2020, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) said on Monday, adding that the below-trend performance could become even worse due to the new coronavirus.

The Geneva-based trade body said its goods trade indicator fell to 95.5 from the 96.6 reading reported in November. Readings of less than 100 indicate trade growth below medium-term trends.

The WTO said the new figure did not take into account the most recent developments, such as the outbreak of the new coronavirus, which could dampen trade prospects further...

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