April 13, 2024
World Economy

Global trade rift widening as Ukraine war passes two-year mark

Two years after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, there are clear signs that the global economy is fragmenting into two separate blocs and that multilateral trade rules that have underpinned commerce for nearly 30 years are under threat.

Rising geopolitical tensions, including in the Middle East, and concerns over economic security are leading to sanctions, trade curbs and signs of a widening split between countries supporting Russia and those backing Ukraine.

The World Trade Organization, which hosts its biennial ministerial conference to debate global trade rules next week, has warned that an outright fragmentation into two rival blocs would shrink the global economy by 5%, with developing countries suffering the most.

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