Nigeria’s Ngozi one step away from becoming WTO boss
Former Nigerian Finance Minister Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is one of only two people remaining in the race for the Director General of the World Trade Organization.
Ngozi, 66, already wields significant clout in the international arena because of her previous role as deputy Managing Director of the World Bank as well as sitting on the boards of influential entities like GAVI, Standard chartered bank, Twitter and Africa Capacity.
She is running against a younger Yoo Myung-hee, 53, who is the Minister of Trade for the Republic of Korea aka South Korea.
No matter who wins, the race has already made a precedent by ensuring for the first time in the history of the organisation, a woman is set to rise to the top of the global trade body.
The second round of selection of the DG WTO had five candidates including Kenya’s Amina C. Mohamed, Mohammed Maziad Al-Tuwaijri of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Dr Liam Fox of the United Kingdom.
Whoever gets the job as the new director general, their greatest challenge will be to restore faith in the WTO, which has only managed to usher in one global trade agreement in the past 25 years.
The pending US elections are casting a shadow over the future of the WTO as the Trump administration has viciously criticized the global body for favouring China. Trump also threatened to pull out of the body at one time.