Policy Article

The Covid-19 trade contraction: A view from global shipping, the EU and China


  • Felbermayr
  • G.
  • Stamer
  • V.
  • Chowdhry
  • S.
Publication Date

This policy brief examines the effects of the Covid19 pandemic on international trade. Major exporting economies have posted record year-over-year monthly declines in export volume ranging from -7.9% in Germany to -24.3% in South Korea. While logistical bottlenecks are being solved, low demand puts pressure on trade activity. The shipping industry has reduced its activity around Europe, Asia and America by up to -10% pointing to a prolonged reduction in trade. Over the first quarter of 2020, China’s trade contracted severely with most economies – particularly Canada, Japan, Russia, Italy and South Africa.The trade collapse affects businesses differently and especially hits those firms that participate in low-value added stages of global value chains by assembling components.


Key Words

  • COVID19