March 2, 2021


Dambela Blog

Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala appointed as the new Director General of the WTO

1 min read

Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has been appointed as the Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

WTO confirmed the selection of Dr. Ngozi Okonjo Iweala of Nigeria as the organization’s seventh Director General at a special meeting of the General Council, following a selection process that included eight candidates from around the world.

When she takes office on 1 March, she will become the first woman and the first African to be chosen as Director General. Her term, renewable, will expire on 31 August 2025.

The General Council decision follows months of uncertainty which arose when the US initially refused to join the consensus around Dr Okonjo-Iweala and threw its support behind Trade Minister Yoo Myung-hee of the Republic of Korea. But following Ms Yoo’s decision on 5 February to withdraw her candidacy, the administration of newly elected US President Joe Biden dropped the US objection and announced instead that Washington extends its “strong support” to the candidacy of Dr Okonjo-Iweala.

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