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3D printing could erase quarter of global trade

October 4, 2017

ING report (Copyright: www.bloomberg.com)

The burgeoning 3D printing industry could potentially wipe out about a quarter of globe trade by 2060 according to ING.

Bloomberg’s new article penned by Jeanna Smialek reveals that the growth of 3D printing could result in about a quarter of global trade being erased, a finding posited in an ING review by the head of international trade analysis, Raoul Leering.

According to Leering, “If high-speed 3D printing makes mass production using the tool viable, it could cause major disruption to the global flow of goods”, cutting world trade by a quarter as a result, “because it would require less labour and reduce the need to import intermediate and final goods from low-wage countries.” Major importers would therefore see their trade deficits attenuate, but countries that have a trade surplus could see a negative impact.

This is what will happen according to Leering’s “slow-growth scenario” but “estimates are uncertain”, though they do “highlight that there’s potential for disruption.”

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