WTO says goods trade fell in Q3, Omicron raises risks

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FILE PHOTO: A logo is pictured outside the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in Geneva

GENEVA – The World Trade Organization said on Monday that global merchandise trend fell by 0.8% in the third quarter, adding that the emergence of the Omicron coronavirus variant had raised the risk of missing the forecast 2021 growth rate.

Trade volume slipped between July-September due to supply chain disruptions, shortages of production inputs and rising COVID-19 cases, the WTO said in a statement on its website.

A 2021 growth target could theoretically still be met, it said, but the emergence of Omicron has “tipped the balance of risks towards the downside, increasing the chance of a more negative outcome.”

(Reporting by Emma Farge; Editing by Maria Sheahan)