Trade Updates #1

“Covid-19 in 2020/Q1”

2020, the year that the world found itself in a crisis like no other. The economical impacts of Covid-19 on global trade is still unforeseen. The World Trade Organization (WTO) announced its annual global trade forecast with a fall in a range between 13%-32% for 2020. International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects a 3% shrink globally in national GDP’s which is 6.1% for advanced economies and 7.5% for Euro Area. More than 100 countries closed their borders in March and most of them still remain shut for international travellers. World Tourism Organisation (WTO) predicts a 70% loss in global tourism revenues which means up to 1.2 Trillion$ loss.

Unfortunately, this damage report can go on and on. However, this crisis should have its own winners. Who are they? And what about the post-pandemic economy? Here I share some data and analysis as a result of my research about the Q1 global trade records.

In 2020/Q1, Ireland and Switzerland raised their exports unlike most of the other countries. The United Kingdom had its worst quarter for the last 30 years, where USA, Germany, France, Canada and Spain had their worst for the last 4 years and China, Japan and Korea had their worst for the last 3 years. What is the secret sauce for Ireland and Switzerland? Here it is: The formula is, ICT + Medical. Yes, Ireland’s main exports are the information communications technology (ICT) services, pharmaceutical products, machines and medical devices, whereas Switzerland’s main exports are pharmaceutical products, ICT services and precious metals & stones.

We all wish this virus season would end soon but the economists project to see the similar numbers in Q2 this year. Probably the impacts will continue till the end of 2020. Then, what will change for nations/countries/unions? The first response came from the governments that support SMEs with grants, incentives and credits. The second response was from unions and networks with funding programmes focusing on medical and artificial intelligence solutions for Covid-19 and post-pandemic period. Such calls under Horizon 2020 and Eureka Network will support many SMEs and initiatives to build many unique solutions and business opportunities.

Meet our experts for support on R&D&I funds. Refo guides SMEs’ and entrepreneurs’ innovative Covid-19 solutions and post-pandemic business ideas. We write EU grant proposals and build consortiums.