WTO: Growth Rate for Globe Trade to Remain Slow, but Positive, in 2016

World Trade Volume

On April 7, the World Trade Organization (WTO) released its updated global trade outlook for the remainder of the year. The organization projects trade volume to expand in 2016, but at a sluggish pace of 2.8 percent year-over-year, which is roughly the same rate of growth posted last year.

“Trade is still registering positive growth, albeit at a disappointing rate,” said WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo, noting that if the projection holds, 2016 will be the fifth consecutive year that trade growth was below 3 percent. He also cautioned that “creeping protectionism” – in the form of government restrictions – continues to create trade barriers and hinder global trade growth.

The WTO projects an improved growth rate of 3.6 percent in 2017 – although this is still well below the average rate (5 percent) achieved since 1990. More details are available in this WTO news release.