Trade-to-GDP ratio

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The trade-to-GDP ratio is an indicator of the relative importance of international trade in the economy of a country. It is calculated by dividing the aggregate value of imports and exports over a period by the gross domestic product for the same period. Although called a ratio, it is usually expressed as a percentage. It is used as a measure of the openness of a country to international trade, and so may also be called the trade openness ratio.[1]:63[2] It may be seen as an indicator of the degree of globalisation of an economy.[1]:64

Other factors aside, the trade-to-GDP ratio tends to be low in countries with large economies and large populations such as Japan and the United States, and to have a higher value in small economies.[1]:63[2] Singapore has the highest trade-to-GDP ratio of any country; between 2008 and 2011 it averaged about 400%.[3]:vii

Worldwide trade-to-GDP ratio rose from just over 20% in 1995 to about 30% in 2014.[4]:17


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Richard L. Harris (2008). Dependency, Underdevelopment, and Neoliberalism; in: Richard L. Harris, Jorge Nef (editors) (2008). Capital, Power, and Inequality in Latin America and the Caribbean. Series: Critical Currents in Latin American Perspective. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. ISBN 9780742555235.
  2. 2.0 2.1 OECD Science, Technology and Industry Scoreboard 2011: 6. Competing in the Global Economy: 6. Trade openness. Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Accessed November 2015.
  3. [Trade Policy Review Body] (2012). Trade Policy Review: Report by the Secretariat: Singapore; Revision (Summary). World Trade Organization. Accessed November 2015.
  4. [s.n.] (2015). World trade and the WTO: 1995-2014. World Trade Organization: International Trade Statistics. Accessed November 2015.