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OACPS nations endorse Okonjo-Iweala for WTO job

All 79-member nations of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) endorse Okonjo-Iweala as candidate for WTO job.

OACPS Secretary-General, Georges Chikoti, announced the endorsement after she was published as a finalist for position of WTO director-general.

“If elected, Dr. Okonjo-Iweala will create history as the first female and first national of the OACPS to lead the WTO…” he said.

He described her as “a global finance expert, economist and international development expert with over 30 years of experience working in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin and North America.”

“Dr. Okonjo-Iweala brings to the post a wealth of experience and a well-earned reputation as a reformer.

“A skilled negotiator, she has brokered numerous agreements which have produced win-win outcomes and is regarded as an effective consensus builder and an honest broker who enjoys the trust of governments and stakeholders.

“More pertinently, as the world seeks to put COVID-19 behind it, Dr. Okonjo-Iweala is chair of the Board of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and was recently appointed as the African Union (AU) Special Envoy to mobilise international financial support for the fight against COVID-19 and WHO Special Envoy for Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator.

“The OACPS congratulates Dr. Okonjo-Iweala on her progress thus far and reaffirms its unreserved support for her candidacy for this position.”

The trio of headhunters for the WTO position announced on 8 October that Okonjo-Iweala is one of two finalists.

The selection process is overseen by Amb. David Walker, Amb. Castillo (chair, Dispute Settlement), and Amb. Aspelund (chair, Trade Policy Review).

The other finalist is South Korea’s Trade Minister, Yoo Myung-hee, both of who made it an all-female choice and outcome.

COVER: Dr. Okonjo-Iweala and Ambassador Chikoti during a recent visit by NOI to OACPS Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. All 79 OACPS nations endorse Okonjo-Iweala for the position.