The World Trade Organization (WTO) reports that global exports of intermediate goods (IGs) fell by 10 per cent year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2022 to US$ 2.3 trillion, reflecting the disruptions global supply chains faced in the closing months of the year due to the geopolitical context, commodity shortages, high energy prices and weak consumption.
The decrease affected practically all regions.
Asia experienced the most significant decline, with a drop of 15 per cent in its IG exports year-on-year in the fourth quarter. IG exports of Hong Kong, China fell most steeply as its outbound shipments of high-tech components (computer memories and integrated circuits) fell by 42 per cent from US$ 13.1 billion to US$ 7.5 billion.
IG exports from Europe experienced a 9 per cent decrease, which can be traced to sharp declines in exports of metals such as aluminium alloys, whose production was deeply affected by the rise in energy costs triggered by the war in Ukraine.
IG exports of Africa fell 14 per cent , while IG exports of North America and South and Central America (-2% and -0.1% respectively) suffered distinctly less.