Global Trade Current Affairs

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29 September: World Maritime Day

The World Maritime Day is observed across the world on 29 September to highlight the importance of shipping safety, maritime security and the marine environment.

Several events are organised to mark this day by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), member Governments, maritime industry etc.

2016 Theme:Shipping: indispensable to the world”. The theme focuses on the critical link between shipping and global society. It also raises awareness of the relevance of the role of IMO as the global regulatory body for international shipping.

Key Facts

  • According to UNCTAD, around 80% of global trade by volume and over 70% of global trade by value are carried by sea and are handled by ports worldwide.
  • These shares are even higher in the case of most developing countries. Without shipping import and export of goods on scale necessary to sustain modern world will be not be possible.
  • There are more than 50,000 merchant ships trading internationally, transporting every kind of cargo and manned by more than a million seafarers.
  • Over the past 5 decades and more, IMO has developed and adopted a comprehensive framework of global regulations covering legal matters, maritime safety, environmental protection and other areas.
  • Under this global regulatory framework, shipping has become more efficient, progressively safer and more environment-friendly.


  • The World Maritime Day marks the date on which convention of the IMO (a specialized agency of the United Nations) was adopted in 1958. It was first observed in 1978,
  • The IMO’s original name was the Inter-Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization (IMCO) but it was changed to IMO in 1982.


WTO cuts 2016 global trade forecast to 2.8%

The World Trade Organization (WTO) has revised its 2016 global trade updated forecast for 2016 downward by more than one percentage point to 2.8% from 3.9%.

The main reasons for cutting the forecast rate is slowdown in China and broad market volatility that continues to threaten growth.

Key facts

  • WTO has mentioned that various factors were continuing to apply downward pressure on global trade and commerce.
  • Declining commodities prices has shown few signs of reversing and also the slowdown in Chin, the world’s top commodities consumer remains uncertain.
  • Slowing in China (and) worsening financial market volatility may be the key factors that could further suppress global trade in 2016.