WTO Leadership Down to Two Candidates


WTO Leadership Is Down to the Final Two Candidates

In the build up to finding a new leader for World Trade Organization, members of the organisation have selected two final candidates – Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and South Korea’s Yoo Myung-hee – to advance to the final round.

By this development, the WTO will likely have the first female director general in its 25-year history.

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

Okonjo-Iweala was a two-term finance minister in Nigeria and former foreign affairs minister. She has experience working at international governance bodies as a former managing director of the World Bank and as a chairman at the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization.

Yoo is South Korea’s trade minister. During her 25-year career in government, she has helped expand her country’s trade network through bilateral accords with the U.S., China and the U.K.

Yoo Myung-hee
Bloomberg photo

WTO General Council Chairman David Walker will announce the results to the institution’s delegates on Thursday morning in Geneva.

In a report by Bloomberg, William Reinsch, a trade official in the Clinton administration and senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies said, “They’re both very well qualified, it’s going to be a fight”. The top challenge will be “restoring the organization to full strength and viability, and restoring its reputation. “You need members to have confidence that the WTO is capable of solving problems. I think right now that confidence is eroded.”

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