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Merchandise trade continued to grow strongly across major economies in the first quarter of 2011. Total imports of G7 and BRICS countries grew by 11% in the first quarter compared to 8.2% in the previous quarter.
Surging food and commodity prices are undermining efforts to tackle global poverty and hunger and threaten economic growth, said OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría.
The OECD, World Trade Organization and the UN’s Conference on Trade and Development have called on the leaders of the G20 countries to resist protectionism or the prospects for economic recovery may be wiped out.
With billions more people to feed, world food production will have to rise by nearly 50 % in the next 20 years. The farming sector will also be faced with diminishing land and water resources and the impact of climate change.
Secretary-General Gurría called for the need to agree on common international targets in areas such as innovation and green growth predicting "they could become the overarching umbrella for the G20 Framework’s structural agenda".Gurria's remarks to G20 leaders reflected the fact that the focus on structural policies will constitute the principal element of the OECD's contribution to future work on the G20 Framework Strong, Sustainable
The OECD, World Trade Organisation and the UN’s Conference of Trade and Development have called on the leaders of the G20 countries to make a stronger commitment to open trade and investment as the global economy begins its recovery from the crisis.
All countries need to trade, with their neighbours and globally, to sustain long-term economic growth. Some low-income countries lack the instutitions, infrastructure to benefit from open markets and lift their people out of poverty.
With world trade volumes likely to shrink by as much as 13 percent in 2009 from 2008 levels, the OECD is urging governments to avoid protectionist measures and keep markets open in order to allow economies to benefit from the recovery when it comes.
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Export Credits Statement - 24 April 2009
Thirty-five countries have agreed to co-ordinate export credit support to help boost international trade and investment during the economic crisis. The OECD will host regular meetings to exchange information and monitor progress.