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Globalisation and the Future of Trade

Globalisation and the Future of Trade

Global trade has grown tremendously due to technological innovations in transportation and the resulting decline in shipping costs. Globalisation of supply chains and the unbundling of production processes have led to a hub-and-spoke model in trade. Simultaneously, there has been a proliferation of free trade agreements across the globe. However, global trade faces several challenges including worsening macroeconomic conditions, declining relevance of WTO, rising geopolitical tensions, and restrictions on migration. This study discusses the future of trade given the new technological, economic, political, and regulatory shifts globally.


  • Executive Summary
    • Key Findings
  • Current State of Global Trade
    • Top Traded Items across Historical Periods-Commodities
    • Exponential Growth in Global Trade
    • Unbundling in Global Trade
    • Proliferation of FTAs across the Globe
    • Trade is still Largely Regional in Nature
    • Effects of Globalisation of Trade
    • Positive Impact of Trade and Globalisation
    • Negative Impact of Trade and Globalisation
  • Challenges Faced by Global Trade
    • Challenges Lead to Slowdown in Global Trade Growth
    • Growth of Bilateral Trade Agreements
    • Emergence of Political-Economic Trading Blocs
  • Future of Global Trade and Investments
    • What does the Future Hold for Trade?
    • New Technologies will Increase Node-to-Node Trade
    • Unbundling of Global Economic Structures through Blockchains and Peer-to-Peer Structure
    • Global Political Conflicts may Change Trade Linkages
    • Homogenisation of Global Regulations to Favour Trade
    • Top Traded Items Across Historical Periods-Commodities
    • Top Traded Goods in 2150-A Hypothesis
    • Data as the New Oil

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