WTO Predicts Global Trade Growth Under 3.3%

By Gamal Khattab February 27, 2024 2070

Director-General's Warning

The World Trade Organization's Director-General, Okonjo-Iweala, recently announced that global merchandise trade growth may be less than the expected 3.3% this year. This news was shared during a ministerial meeting in Abu Dhabi.

New Rules in the Works

The purpose of the meeting is to establish new rules for global trade. However, Okonjo-Iweala cautioned that reaching agreements has become more challenging due to the division of the global economy into separate blocs.

Challenges Ahead

Okonjo-Iweala acknowledged the difficulties ahead, urging ministers to work together to finalize negotiations. Despite the obstacles, negotiators remain hopeful about reaching agreements on important issues like global fish stocks and government subsidies for fishermen.

Key Outcomes

Following the previous ministerial conference in Geneva, where aid for harmful fishing practices was banned, the organization aims to reach a new agreement focusing on aid that contributes to overfishing and overcapacity.

Future Importance

The UAE has pledged $10 million to support various World Trade Organization initiatives, emphasizing the importance of trade and sustainability. Okonjo-Iweala's determination and proactive approach are seen as positive factors for achieving successful outcomes.

Optimism Amid Challenges

Despite the challenges, there is optimism that even modest results, such as a common goal statement from ministers, will be significant. The World Trade Organization plays a crucial role in the global economy, and efforts to strengthen it are essential.

Source: Agencies