Global trade growth will come close to its pre-crisis peak by the end of the decade, spurred on by recoveries in advanced economies.

Between 2017 and 2020, Oxford Economics analysts expect trade to accelerate at up to 8% – well above the relatively anaemic 1.5% growth it has been enjoying in recent years – but slightly under the average 9% during the pre-crash halcyon days.

A series of high-profile trade agreements are predicted to add hundreds of billions of dollars to trade volume over the next number of years, if governments around the world are able to get them over the line.

With trade growth having been driven mainly out of emerging markets for the last number of years, the report, authored on behalf of HSBC, predicts a recovering eurozone and a booming US to assume the mantle after coming out of a near decade-long slump.

The report will strike many as optimistic: it cites calculations for the impact of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) which have been challenged vigorously by labour and environmental groups.

It does, however, raise a treaty – often overlooked – which is on the verge of completion.

With ITA signatories accounting for 96% of world trade in these products, this suggests that the agreement played a significant role in unlocking this growth potential. Oxford Economics

“The WTO’s Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) has already been agreed and is awaiting ratification. The accord will reduce red tape and streamline customs requirements. Full implementation will take a number of years, but the OECD estimates that it has the potential to reduce trade costs by 12% or more,” the authors write.

Specifically, the WTO’s efforts to expand the International Technology Agreement (ITA), initially agreed almost 20 years ago but on the verge of being enlarged.

“The ITA focuses on the elimination of tariffs for a specified list of around 250 ITC products. It came into force in 1997 with 43 signatory countries, but membership has since increased to 78 countries. Since the agreement was signed, world exports of ITC products have tripled in value, reaching an estimated US$1.4tn (equal to almost 10% of world exports, a higher share than agriculture or automotive products). With ITA signatories accounting for 96% of world trade in these products, this suggests that the agreement played a significant role in unlocking this growth potential,” the report says.

The research jars slightly with other, less buoyant reports. Economists at Morgan Stanley recently bemoaned the value that flagging commodities markets are chopping of global trade, particularly in Asia.

“Export growth in the region has averaged just 3.8% over the past three years compared with the historical trend of 12.8% over the 1992-2007 period. Indeed, we estimate that if export growth were to have followed its long-term historical trend, exports levels would be 56% higher than they are currently,” wrote analysts at the bank.

In terms of hard data, the HSBC report predicts Vietnam’s export growth to outstrip that of any other country by 2030, slightly ahead of India, China and Turkey.

Economists have long been talking up the potential of Vietnam’s exports sector, while issuing cautionary words about the country’s systemic structural problems.

“With the economy growing strongly on the back of a dynamic export sector, and the external position looking more stable, the situation in Vietnam is looking much better than it was a few years ago. Although the government still needs to make more progress on cleaning up the banking sector, we are becoming increasingly positive on Vietnam’s prospects for the next few years,” wrote Gareth Leather of Capital Economics in a note.