Developing countries’ record trade share

Trade growth was stronger around the world in the first half of 2004 than it had been for more than two decades.  Nom­i­nal mer­chan­dise trade growth of 21% was due to a com­bi­na­tion of strong real trade growth (9%) and a sharp increase in dol­lar prices (11%) bq. Rid­ing a wave of high­er oil and com­mod­i­ty prices, and vig­or­ous glob­al trade growth includ­ing recov­ery in trade in office and tele­com equip­ment, devel­op­ing coun­tries saw their share in world mer­chan­dise trade rise sharply in 2004 to 31%, the high­est since 1950. “WTO”: Even in Africa, exports were up by 30% over a strong per­for­mance in 2003. But (there’s always a ‘but&#8217):
* a sharp rise in the price of min­er­al and fuel com­modi­ties (more than 30%) account­ed for much of the growth on a region­al basis
* the out­look for 2005—forshadowed by the slow­down in the sec­ond half of 2004—is for a marked slow­down with a decel­er­a­tion of mer­chan­dise trade growth from 9% (in real terms) to about 6.5%.

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