Amidst high trade tensions and policy uncertainty, UN cuts economic growth forecast

World Bank/Chhor Sokunthea A farmer harvests mung beans in Cambodia’s northern province. After harvest season, farmers like her move from the lowlands to the highlands to get better value for their crops.

This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations.


Against a backdrop of unresolved trade tensions, high international policy uncertainty and softening business confidence, the UN on Tuesday announced a broad-based slowdown in the global economy and cut its growth predictions.

The data comes from the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) in its mid-year World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP) report, which finds that all major developed economies, and most developing regions, have weakened prospects for growth.

At the launch of its main annual report in January, UN economists warned of “risks on the horizon.” Five months on, with trade disputes and tariff increases, those fears have been borne out, and the forecasts contained in the January report have now been revised downwards: growth for 2019 is now predicted to be a moderate 2.7 per cent, down markedly from 3.4 per cent in 2018.

DESA warns, however, that if trade tensions escalate further, the effects of climate change accelerate, or there is a sudden deterioration in financial conditions, the slowdown could be sharper, or more prolonged.

Slowdown threatens UN agenda to end poverty

The predicted slowdown spells bad news for efforts to implement the UN’s 2030 Agenda for sustainable development, which contains a set of targets to end extreme poverty and promote prosperity, whilst protecting the environment.

A weaker global economy puts essential investments in areas such as education, health and climate action at risk. Developing countries are likely to be hit hard, particularly those whose economies rely heavily on markets likely to be affected by any additional tariffs and subsequent retaliatory measures.

The report notes that, although poverty is concentrated in rural areas, the rapidly growing rate of population movements from the countryside to cities, must be carefully managed. This is particularly relevant for Africa and South Asia, the two regions with the highest number of people in poverty, which are expected to also experience the most rapid pace of urbanization in the next two decades.

Calling for more comprehensive and better-targeted policies to tackle the slump, Elliot Harris, UN Chief Economist and Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development, said in a statement “it is increasingly clear that policies to promote sustainable development will need to look beyond GDP growth and identify new and more robust measures of economic performance that appropriately reflect the costs of inequality, insecurity and climate change.”

With the climate emergency continuing to cause more frequent and intense natural disasters, disproportionately affecting the most vulnerable countries, the report calls for a multilateral approach to global climate policy, including an explicit call for carbon pricing, which would force the private sector and governments to include the environmental costs of consumption and production in their economic decision-making process.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Military escalation will have ‘serious consequences’ for Yemeni civilians, warns UN Special Envoy

COP21 Breaking News: China has promised to cut emissions from its coal power plants by 60% by 2020

6 surprising side effects of this year’s global heatwave

The needs, challenges and power dynamics of refugee resettlement

OECD sees global growth moderating as uncertainties intensify

G20 LIVE: G20 Antalya Summit in Numbers, 15-16 November 2015

Service and Sacrifice: Guinean peacekeepers make their mark in Mali

“A Junior Enterprise is run only by students.. there are no professors or managers that can help you solve your problems”

At the edge of humanity: refugee healthcare in Greece and the EU

It’s time to fulfil the promises made to women 25 years ago

‘Deteriorating’ human rights in Belarus amounts to ‘wholescale oppression’: UN expert

The Europe we want: Just, Sustainable, Democratic and Inclusive

Low productivity jobs continue to drive employment growth

Ireland’s planning to make its Emerald Isle even greener

What Ghana can teach us about integrating refugees

Can green bonds help us manage climate risk?

AI-powered automation will have an ethnic bias

Obese people more likely to smoke, says new gene research: WHO

Russia and the West to partition Ukraine?

Conflict prevention, mediation: among ‘most important tools’ to reduce human suffering, Guterres tells Security Council

China, forever new adventures

European Court rules that ECB’s OMT program of 2012 is OK; not a word from Germany about returning the Greek 2010 courtesy

Predicting two more years of economic stagnation

Removing sweets from supermarket checkouts could help fight obesity

New UN poverty report reveals ‘vast inequalities’ between countries

Primary Healthcare: Back to the Basics

It’s EU vs. Google for real: the time is now, the case is open

Technology can help us save the planet. But more than anything, we must learn to value nature

South Africa still hasn’t won LGBTQ+ equality. Here are 5 reasons why

Macron crowned king of Europe in Washington D.C.; just a working meeting with Trump for Merkel

The refugee crisis as a young Nigerian doctor sees it

The Eurogroup protects Germany and blames others

Central Asia: the European Union matches political commitment with further concrete support

A Young entrepreneur cries out: “start in Europe, stay in Europe”

The Commission tells Berlin it is legally obliged to help Eurozone out of stagnation

Ensure that widows are ‘not left out or left behind’, UN chief urges on International Day

In the future, no one should be excluded from healthcare

Member States’ compliance with EU law in 2018: efforts are paying off, but improvements still needed

EU Council approves visa-free travel for Ukraine and cement ties with Kiev

Counting spillovers from the fast track EU-US free trade agreement

Emergency meeting called as Ebola spreads to Congolese city – UN health agency

Parliament adopts new rules for short-stay visas

ECB steadily continues monetary easing policy as EU economy gains momentum

Breaking barriers between youth in the new tech era: is there an easy way through?

Main results of EU-Japan summit which took place on 25/04/2019 in Brussels

EU and China to do more in common if the global scene gets worse

3 ways to fight short-termism and relaunch Europe

COP21 Breaking News: Conference of Youth Focuses on Hard Skills to Drive Greater Climate Action

How cultural understanding can help in the cultural shock

Recession: the best argument for growth

This Indian school accepts plastic waste instead of fees

Global health challenges require global medical students

Thousands flee fresh violence in South Sudan, many ‘suffering from trauma’

Dignified health for all who live here

EU-U.S. Trade Talks: European Commission presents draft negotiating mandates

250+ senior claims leaders under one roof, exchanging transformation strategy

South Sudan ‘revitalized’ peace deal must be inclusive, Security Council hears

These artists created a huge open library – and their idea’s gone global

Cameron’s “No Brexit” campaign wins top business support as Tory front breaks

16 foods that are good for you – and the planet

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s