Global trade to fall 17% due to full trade war: WTO

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SINGAPORE
In a full-blown trade war, where tariffs were to go back to levels that existed before the multilateral trading system was created, global trade would plummet 17 per cent – more than it fell during the Great Recession of the late 2000s. Keith Rockwell, the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) director for information and external relations, told a three-day workshop for regional parliamentarians on Tuesday (June 11) that this was the dip its economists had estimated, with trade-restrictive measures on the rise. While such measures are applied regularly, they have not been of the magnitude put in place recently. Between October 2017 and October 2018, measures were put in place affecting US$588 billion worth of trade, said Mr Rockwell. This is seven times more than in the previous year, and does not include many measures that have been applied recently, he added. The WTO defines trade-restrictive measures as new or increased tariffs, customs procedures, quantitative restrictions and local content measures. — VoM

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