Risks of rising interest rates, protectionism debated at WACO System’s AGM

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May 17, 2018: Rising protectionism and higher interest rates could very well end up reversing the period of global economic growth that the world has enjoyed since the end of the great recession, nearly a decade ago, noted Borislav Bjelicic, professor from the University of Mannheim, while discussing the current global economic situation and outlook, at The WACO System’s recent Annual General Meeting.

“The world economy is currently performing well but protectionism could very well lead to a trade war, and higher interest rates marking the end of the loose monetary policy that could temper consumer demands,” he said.

“All of this could very well lead to a situation where the global growth we have enjoyed over the last ten years comes to an end, which is something businesses should be taking into consideration so that we are not caught off guard, as was the case at the start of the last recession.”

Bjelicic put the USA, Europe, and China’s economic zones under the scope, and highlighted the expected rises in interest rates, protectionism, and other factors as casting a shadow over the world economy.

Meanwhile, Anselm Eggert, vice president strategy, portfolio and cooperations, Lufthansa Cargo, offered a more positive outlook after discussing the impact of digitisation on the airfreight industry.

“The global middle class is growing by almost 400,000 people per day, which is great news for humanity,” said Eggert. “This is also the leading driver behind the growth of global trade and will continue to drive growth in worldwide logistics,” he said.

“Digitisation will change logistics – it will unlock further growth and increase efficiency of operations, allowing for greater connectivity with customers and all players along the supply chain and making it more accessible for both,” he further added.

Charles, Executive Director, The WACO System meanwhile said, “From new technologies to an increasingly unpredictable political landscape, our industry is undergoing a period of great change.”

This was WACO System’s 88th AGM that was held in Warsaw, Poland.

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