WTO Releases Service Trade Statistics, Global Service Trade Has Not Yet Recovered

- Jan 27, 2021-

On the 26th local time, the World Trade Organization released statistics on global trade in services. In the third quarter of 2020, global trade in services fell by 24% compared with the same period in 2019. Compared with the data of 30% in the second quarter of 2020, there was only a slight rebound. This is in sharp contrast to the strong rebound in commodity trade. Data shows that the global trade in services in November 2020 was 16% lower than the same period in 2019. Due to the second wave of epidemics, many countries have adopted stricter lockdown measures. The restrictions on travel and related services will continue until the first quarter of 2021. The prospects for trade recovery are poor.

The World Trade Organization pointed out that statistical data proved previously expected that the new crown pneumonia pandemic will hit service trade much more than merchandise trade. In the third quarter of 2020, global merchandise trade fell by only 5% compared with the same period in 2019. Travel remains the most severely affected part of service trade. Compared with the same period in 2019, global travel in the third quarter of 2020 has decreased by 68%, and other service trade sectors have also declined. However, computer services have bucked the trend and increased by 9%. The demand for cloud computing and other computer services is increasing.