Global imbalances: What role for the WTO?

Juan A. Marchetti, Michele Ruta, Robert Teh 02 January 2013

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The world witnessed a large build-up of current account and merchandise trade imbalances, both in absolute and relative terms, prior to the global financial and economic crisis (see Table 1 and Figure 1). Current account/merchandise trade surpluses were most pronounced among the East Asian economies (e.g. China), oil exporters (e.g. Saudi Arabia) and the ‘core’ Eurozone countries (e.g. Germany). The US and the Eurozone periphery countries had large and persistent deficits. While imbalances contracted after the crisis, they remained large both in absolute terms and in relation to GDP.

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Topics:  International trade

Tags:  WTO, trade, liberalisation, current account imbalances

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