Ex-Chinese diplomat details new WTO forecast on world trade

GENEVA (AP) — The World Trade Organization is predicting a 9.2% drop in merchandise trade this year, saying the hit from the pandemic doesn’t appear to be bad as first thought. Economists from the Geneva-based trade body on Tuesday revised their earlier prediction of a 12.9% plunge in merchandise trade this year. That forecast was presented in April, when COVID-19 case counts were soaring in major economic engines like the Europe Union and the United States. The WTO says, however, that the recovery may be slower than anticipated and could worsen if case counts rise again.