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I would be listener-in-chief, tough negotiator and consensus-builder at WTO- Nigeria’s Okonjo-Iweala

2 months ago
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Nigeria’s nominee for the post of the Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has said she would be a combination of a listener-in-chief, tough negotiator and consensus-builder if selected.

Okonjo-Iweala, who is contesting against seven other nominees for the position of director-general of the WTO, told China-based Xinhuanet.com in a recent interview that her top priorities, if selected, would be preparing for the WTO’s 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12) in Kazakhstan in 2021, restoring the dispute settlement system, and updating the WTO’s rule book…

According to Okonjo-Iweala “I would be focusing, if I get the job, on the dispute settlement system because this is the fundamental pillar of the WTO,” 

“If you have a rule-based organisation, you must have a place where rules are arbitrated and that’s what happens with the dispute settlement system. “So, restoring that will be a top priority as well.”

Nigeria picked Okonjo-Iweala, an economist who twice served as Nigeria’s finance minister and briefly acted as foreign minister and had a 25-year career at the World Bank, including as a managing director, for the post of WTO director-general in June.

The lady, who also sits on the board of Twitter and the Gavi Vaccine Alliance, said she was confident to win the selection process claiming, “I have strong political skills and negotiation skills. I think that’s very much needed. I am a consensus-builder, and I’m a good listener 

Okonjo-Iweala also noted that she hopes China will play the role of an economic growth engine in the current COVID-19 pandemic as it did during the 2008 global financial crisis.

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