Okonjo-Iweala in high spirits, says WTO role vital

Nigeria’s former Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has expressed optimism over her chances of getting the job of director-general of the World Trade Organisation.

According to the Development Economist, the role of the international trade organisation has become “more vital than ever”.

“Trade is a force for good, and (if) properly harnessed can help lift millions out of poverty and bring shared prosperity. The role of WTO is more vital than ever. Let’s fight for a WTO that works for all,” she wrote on her verified Twitter handle on Thursday evening.

Okonjo-Iweala had been nominated for the top job by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and later backed up by the Economic Community of West African States.

As of July 8 when nominations closed, six candidates including the former minister are jostling to become the next WTO head.

The other candidates are South Korean Trade Minister Yoo Myung-hee; Kenya’s former foreign minister Amina Mohamed; Mexico’s former WTO deputy director-general Jesus Seade Kuri; Egyptian former diplomat Hamid Mamdouh; and former Moldovan foreign minister Tudor Ulianovschi.

The successful candidate will succeed the current Director-General, Mr Roberto Azevêdo, who has announced that he will step down on August 31.

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