The World Trade Organization cut its forecast for global trade growth this year by more than a third on Tuesday, reflecting a slowdown in China and falling levels of imports into the United States. Reuters reports the new figure of 1.7%, down from the WTO’s previous estimate of 2.8% in April, marked the first time in 15 years that international commerce was expected to lag the growth of the world economy. The figures should be a wake-up call for governments, WTO Director-General Roberto Azevedo said in the six-monthly trade outlook report. The data underlined concerns that, after a long period of growth through globalization and reliance on global trade, governments are increasingly seeking to protect their own industries and promote domestic producers at the expense of foreign competitors.
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