In 2016 the global economy maintained the slow growth trend seen over the past eight years, with a rate of 2.2%, the lowest since the international financial crisis of 2008-2009.
As in previous years, growth was driven by the developing economies, which posted a rate of 3.6% as a group in 2016, while the developed economies expanded by 1.5%.
Projections for 2017 point to a better performance, with the global economy expected to grow by around 2.7%, thanks to an upturn in both emerging and developed economies. The emerging economies are projected to post a growth rate of 4.4% and, as in 2016, India will perform especially well, with a projected rate of 7.7% for 2017.
China’s growth will slow to around 6.5%.
Brazil and the Russian Federation will move from negative to positive growth rates in 2017. The developed economies as a group are expected to post growth of 1.7%. Within that group, the United States will see the strongest growth, at around 1.9%, while the eurozone will exhibit a growth rate of 1.7%. Japan’s economy will pick up to 0.9% growth in 2017.
Global trade volumes are growing even less than the global economy, at just 1.7% in 2106, down from 2.3% in 2015. As a result, world output growth will exceed world trade growth in the 2015-2016 biennium for the first time in 15 years, with the exception of 2009, at the height of the economic and financial crisis.
The sluggish trade activity has been attributed to factors both cyclical —lacklustre global demand and a heavy fall in investment— and structural —the stalled growth in global value chains following rapid expansion in earlier periods, trends towards “localization”, and the growth slowdown in China. The global economic upturn projected for 2017, which should improve the cyclical factors mentioned, is expected to support an expansion rate in the range of 1.8% to 3.1% in the volume of global trade...
Unlike in 2016 when the region contracted by 1.1%, and despite complex external conditions and a number of risks, the region’s economy is expected to switch direction and return positive growth of 1.3%. As in 2016, the weighted average growth figure masks different growth dynamics between countries and subregions. Central America,
including the Spanish-speaking Caribbean and Haiti, is expected to grow by around 3.7% in 2017; including Mexico, with a projected growth rate of 1.9%, brings the average down to 2.3%. Positive growth is projected in 2017 for South America, at 0.9%, and for the English-speaking Caribbean, at 1.3%.
UN Symbol: LC/G.2698-P