May 25, 2023

World Trade Monitor March 2023

World merchandise trade increased with 1.5% in March 2023 compared to the previous month, following a decrease of 0.8% in February compared to January. World trade growth in the first quarter of 2023 stands at -0.9%, following a decline of 2.0% in the final quarter of last year. Most regions showed a decline in merchandise trade during the most recent two quarters, signaling a stagnation in goods trade, after the strong increase in demand for manufactured goods during the pandemic. Regarding the monthly figure for March, most noteworthy is the increase in exports of China (+19.9%), which may partly be attributed to the reopening of China after ending its zero-COVID-19 policy. This is evident from the monthly CPB World Trade Monitor.

Developments in global international trade and industrial production March 2023

  • World trade volume increased 1.5% month-on-month (growth was -0.8% in February, initial estimate -0.9%) and growth was -0.9% in 2023Q1 (-2.0% in 2022Q4).
  • World trade momentum was -0.9% (non-annualised; -2.4% in February, initial estimate -2.2%).
  • World industrial production decreased 0.1% month-on-month (having increased 0.9% in February, initial estimate 1.2%) and growth was 1.1% in 2023Q1 (-0.7% in 2022Q4).
  • World industrial production momentum was 1.1% (non-annualised; 0.2% in February, initial estimate 0.4%).

The next release of the CPB World Trade Monitor is scheduled for Friday 23 June 2023, 12:00 hours, including reporting month April 2023.

CPB publishes a World Trade Monitor every month on behalf of the European Commission. It takes two months for the figures to become available. For questions please contact

Read also the CPB Background Document 'The CPB World Trade Monitor: technical description (update 2023)'. In September 2016 (starting with the July 2016 monitor) the WTM base year has been moved from 2005 to 2010. Clarification of the procedure and its outcomes is given in the downloadable appendix (CPB Memo 'Change of base year WTM').

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The World Trade Monitor is partially financed by DG ECFIN (Directorate General of Economic and Monetary Affairs of the Economic Commission).


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