During the second quarter of the year, the growth of merchandise trade in the group known as the G20which includes countries such as Germany, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, South Korea, the United States, France and India, among others, fell sharply in terms of value, measured in current dollars.
Exports and imports increased 2.1% and 2.6%, respectively, compared to 4.8% and 6.2% in the previous quarter, although the high prices of basic products, aggravated by the Ukraine war, continued to drive merchandise trade growth in nominal terms. This fact reflects, in part, the increase in the value of the US currency against other major currencies.
Likewise, the rebound in the value of energy boosted merchandise trade in North America in the second quarter with an increase in exports of 10.2% in the US and 11% in Canada, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Economic (OECD).
In the European Union, merchandise exports posted modest growth (0.3%), while imports grew faster (3.0%), largely driven by energy. Merchandise exports contracted in East Asia as lockdown measures continued to disrupt economic activity in the region and inflationary pressures weighed on demand for goods abroad. Also, exports fell 4.9% in Japan, 0.4% in China and 2.2% in Korea.
High prices continued to boost the value of exports from the major G20 commodity traders, with exports rising in Australia (+12.5%), Indonesia (+12.7%) and India (+7.1%).
trade in services
Exports and imports are estimated to grow 1.1% and 2.2%, compared to slightly higher rates in the first quarter of 2022. Indeed, robust travel and transportation supported growth in many G20 economies, while the prolonged containment measures of the Covid-19 weighed on services trade in East Asia.
Services trade in North America expanded remarkably in the second quarter of 2022, largely driven by a strong rebound in travel. By contrast, services trade slowed in Europe.
Exports fell 2.7% in Germany due to a decline in intellectual, financial and business services, while imports increased 4.6%, driven by travel. In turn, France registered a modest increase in exports (1.8%) due to transport and travel, while imports contracted 1.2 percent.
In East Asia, trade in services showed a mixed picture, with growth in travel and transportation partially offset by weak trade in other services. For the first time since the first quarter of 2020, China registered a decline in services exports and imports (8.1% and 3.3% less, respectively).