The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) reported, Tuesday, that the value of the merchandise trade of the Group of Twenty reached a new high in the second quarter of 2021, but there are signs of slowing growth.
In the second quarter of 2021, the international merchandise trade of the G20, measured in the current seasonally adjusted US dollar, reached a new record after record levels already recorded in the first quarter of 2021.
G20 merchandise exports and imports increased by 4.1% and 6.4% in the second quarter of 2021 compared to the previous quarter, showing a slowdown compared to the rates recorded in the first quarter of 2021 (8, 6% and 8.5% for exports and imports, respectively). As in the previous quarter, higher raw material prices explain much of the increase, as international shipping congestion and supply problems around semiconductors further put pressure on marketed commodity prices.
The G20 economies most dependent on merchandise exports saw strong export growth in the second quarter of 2021, a combination of rising prices, limited global supply (such as copper) and strong demand (particularly from China, Japan and Korea). Australia’s exports increased 10.0% in the second quarter of 2021, thanks to increased sales of grain, minerals and coal. Brazilian exports increased by 29.4%, led by iron minerals and soybeans. Russian exports grew by 30.7% in the second quarter of 2021, benefiting mainly from higher energy prices.
North American merchandise trade values reached an all-time high in the second quarter of 2021. Canada’s exports increased 4.7%, driven by energy and forest products. Imports increased by 3.6%, and had a major role in metals and pharmaceutical products. Mexico also posted strong growth in the quarter, with exports growing by 3.3% and imports by 5.1%. The US posted 6.8% growth in exports in the second quarter of 2021, led by aircraft, pharmaceuticals and semiconductors with strong demand from Canada and Mexico. Imports in the quarter rose 4.2%, with strong imports of mobile phones and despite slower car purchases.
European G-20 economies have seen an increase in international trade, particularly in aircraft, agricultural products and pharmaceuticals, driven in particular by demand from China and the United States. In the second quarter of 2021, the EU recorded export growth of 2.8% and import growth of 5.7% (France 1.3%, 2.9%, Germany 1.3%, 6.3%, Italy 4.0%, 6.4%). In the UK, exports increased by 12.3% and imports by 11.3% in the second quarter of 2021, a strong recovery after the slowdown in the first quarter.
with information OECD press release
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