The UNCTAD Handbook of Statistics 2022 provides a wide range of statistics and indicators relevant to the analysis of international trade, economy, investment, maritime transport, and development overall. It comes at a time of cascading crises that overlap and compound each other. In uncertain times, reliable statistical information becomes even more indispensable for effective policy responses and decisions, aiding countries to recover from the crises and build a more just, inclusive, and sustainable economy.
The UNCTAD Handbook of Statistics and the UNCTADstat Data Centre make internationally comparable data sets available to policymakers, specialists, researchers, officials of national Governments, representatives of international organizations, journalists, executive managers, and experts of non-governmental organizations. In addition, these statistics underpin all UNCTAD activities. Whether for research, policy advice or technical cooperation, UNCTAD needs reliable and internationally comparable trade, financial and macroeconomic data with global coverage, spanning several decades.
The 2021 data show a strong rebound of gross domestic product, international trade, maritime transport, foreign direct investment (foreign direct investment) and other spheres of global economic activity. While global merchandise trade exceeded its pre-pandemic level by far, for trade in services the recovery in 2021 was not strong enough to compensate the dramatic fall in 2020 experienced during the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in travel. However, UNCTAD nowcasts suggest that the rebound is continuing in 2022, albeit at a slightly moderated speed, leading to new record highs in both goods and services trade values.
The 2022 nowcasts on global merchandise and services trade included in this handbook represent annualized snapshots of UNCTAD’s quarterly nowcasts, which are updated weekly. New this year is their publication to a dedicated dashboard on UNCTADstat, which allows tracking the development of the nowcast and their drivers in almost ‘real time’; see https://unctadstat.unctad.org/EN/Nowcasts.html.
This year again, the online edition of the handbook, the e-handbook, incorporates interactive charts and maps, that allows readers to directly access the data from the UNCTADstat Data Centre. The print version can be ordered at https://shop.un.org/ (ISBN 978-92-1-113076-8).