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Global trade expected to remain sluggish in 2013

A worker walks past shipping containers piled at a port in Ningbo in east China's Zhejiang province, Tuesday, April 9, 2013. China reported higher import growth in March on Wednesday, April 10, 2013 in a possible positive sign for its economic recovery but analysts said doubts about the accuracy of Beijing's data made it hard to draw conclusions. (AP Photo) CHINA OUT

GENEVA (AP) -- The World Trade Organization expects growth in global exports to remain sluggish this year due to Europe's sovereign debt crisis, but sees a rebound in 2014 to more robust levels.

The global trade body forecasts in its annual report Wednesday that trade would grow only 3.3 percent during 2013.

That would still be an improvement from 2012, when trade grew just 2 percent due to financial turmoil in the 17-country Eurozone, economic aftershocks of Japan's earthquake and nuclear crisis, and the impact of political unrest in the oil-rich Middle East

The WTO had earlier forecast a 3.7 percent rise in trade in 2012.