The global economy is facing a number of challenges in the post-pandemic era. As businesses and industries are beginning to re-open, there are many anxieties surrounding the future of global trade. Although global trade is expected to hit a record $32 trillion for 2022, according to a report by UNCTAD, a slowdown is expected for 2023.
A report by The Boston Consulting Group titled “Protectionism, Pandemic, War, and the Future of Trade” predicts that world trade will grow at a rate of just 2.3% per year. This is the lowest rate of growth in 25 years, and represents a sharp decline from the 3.2% growth seen in the years prior. The pandemic has had a huge impact on global trade with many countries implementing export and import restrictions. This has resulted in a decrease in the overall growth of global trade.
The WTO has predicted that global merchandise trade volumes will grow by 3.5% in 2022, slightly better than the 3.0% forecast in April. However, the outlook for 2023 is increasingly gloomy. Economic downturns caused by the pandemic have led to increased risk of protectionism and further disruption of trade flows. This is likely to place further strain on the global trade outlook, potentially causing further contractions in global trade growth.
It is clear that the global trade outlook is uncertain for the foreseeable future. Although some countries have begun to relax restrictions, this has had little effect on global trade. Businesses and industries face many challenges in the post-pandemic era, and the outlook for trade growth appears to be uncertain.