Trade tensions cloud best global growth outlook in seven years: OECD

OECD Sees Better Outlook, if Trade Escalation Avoided

S. Korea to maintain 3% growth for 2018-2019: OECD

An escalating trade war is one of the only things standing in the way of the global economy growing at its fastest pace since 2010 this year and next, according to the influential Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

In its interim economic outlook report, the OECD projects 3.9 percent global growth for 2018 and 2019, up from the November forecasts of 3.7 percent and 3.6 percent, respectively.

And while eurozone growth is expected to ease off from 2.5% previous year to 2.3% in 2018 and 2.1% in 2019, major continental economies like Germany and France are forecast to out-perform the UK.

"Growth is steady or improving in most G20 countries and the expansion is continuing", the group said.

The global economy will grow close to 4 per cent this year and next, better than previously anticipated, according to the OECD, which added a warning that a trade war could roll back the gains seen in recent years.

However, it warned that the recovery risked being undermined by an escalation in trade barriers that would hurt growth and jobs.

Mr Pereira said global growth would be led by a recovery in investment, while an increase in trade volumes of 5.2% in 2017 was expected to continue in 2018.

But 2019 is unchanged at 1.1%, compared to the OECD's most recent forecast in November, and both years are down on the 1.7% growth recorded for 2017. In 2019, the year the United Kingdom is set to leave the European Union, the OECD predicts that growth will slip to just 1.1 per cent. The Paris-based organization had expected growth to be 1.2 percent in 2018 and 1.0 percent in 2019. The OECD, which groups 35 developed economies, called on the world's major nations to avoid a dispute that could impede trade, demand, competition and, ultimately, the health of the global economy.

"Governments should avoid escalation and rely on global solutions to resolve excess capacity in the global steel industry".

President Emmanuel Macron's social welfare, tax and labor market reforms would help France narrow the gap with Germany, with growth forecast at an 11-year high of 2.2 percent (+0.4) before easing to 1.9 percent in 2019 (+0.2).

"Safeguarding the rules-based worldwide trading system will help to support growth and jobs", it said.

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