GENEVA (AP) — The World Trade Organization has cut its forecast for trade growth this year by more than a percentage point, to 2.6%, due to an economic slowdown and amid a trade conflict between the United States and China.
The Geneva-based trade body expects an uptick in trade growth by volume to 3% next year. In September, the WTO had forecast 3.7% growth this year.
It cited weaker economic growth and China’s evolution from manufacturing toward consumption and services. The downgrade comes after the U.S. imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports and the U.S. and China imposed taxes on hundreds of billions of dollars-worth of trade.
WTO Director-General Roberto Azevedo said Tuesday: “With trade tensions running high, no one should be surprised by this outlook.”