Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, former Nigerian finance minister, has become the sole candidate in the World Trade Organisation’s Director-General race, as South Korean Trade Minister, Yoo Myung-hee withdrew her bid to contest.
This was disclosed by Myung-hee after she had mentioned it to the United States, according to Bloomberg.
According to the report, she took various issues into account “comprehensively” including the need to revitalize the multilateral organization before arriving at this point.
The withdrawal comes after dozens of former US government officials urged President Joe Biden to endorse Okonjo-Iweala after the Trump administration blocked her selection. The opposition halted the selection process because WTO decisions are made on the basis of a consensus of its members.
What it means
- If the U.S., Korea and the WTO’s other 162 members join a consensus to appoint Okonjo-Iweala, the WTO can announce a meeting to confirm her appointment within a matter of days.
- If confirmed, Okonjo-Iweala would be the first woman and the first African to lead the organization in its 25-year history.
What you should know
- Nairametrics had earlier reported that the 66-year-old two-time former minister said she remained positive of becoming the first African and first female director-general in the 25-year history of the WTO despite ‘hiccups’.
- Okonjo-Iweala serves on Twitter’s board of directors, as chair of the GAVI vaccine alliance as well as a special envoy for the World Health Organisation’s COVID-19 fight.