Nigeria’s respected economist, Ngonzi Okonjo-Iweala is set to become the next head of the World Trade Organisation after her path to the job was cleared by the withdrawal from the race of her South Korean challenger Yoo Myung-hee.Ms. Okonjo-Iweala is a former Finance minister in Nigeria, who over the weekend secured the “unequivocal backing” of President Joe Biden for the WTO’s top job.
This is another indication of a sea change in US foreign policy since Biden took over from his predecessor Donald Trump at the White House.
It is now a matter of time before Ms. Okonjo-Iweala is confirmed to the position, a first for any woman and African to head the organisation.
Former US president Trump had expressed support for her opponent Yoo Myung-hee praising the former South Korean Trade minister’s expertise and experienceas a candidate for the WTO leadership.
Yoo Myung-hee who last October was named as one of the two finalists for the WTO position last Friday announced her withdrawal from the contest.
There were eight candidates for the WTO position from the onset.
The 164-member WTO is a regulatory body for international trade which came into being in 1995.