South Korea’s minister of trade, Ms. Yoo Myung-hee is set to withdraw from the World Trade Organisation’s – Director General contest against Ngozi Okonjo Iweala.
Her move paves a way for Nigeria’s candidate, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, to be confirmed as the head of the global trade body.
According to a report by Washington Trade Daily (WTD) South Korea was expected to announce its decision to withdraw Myung-hee shortly, to enable the WTO’s General Council appoint Okonjo-Iweala.
“Korea plans to withdraw Trade Minister Yoo from the race for new WTO director-general, paving the way for Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala to be the next DG and the first woman and African in the role.” Washington Trade daily wrote on its Twitter page.
It added that South Korea has already conveyed its decision to the United States, which had been insisting on the selection of Myung-hee.
But for the US’ opposition, the WTO’s General Council would’ve named Nigeria’s former coordinating minister for the economy and minister of finance as the director-general in October after she had secured the vote of 163 of the 164 members of the trade organisation.
Ngozi Okonjo Iweala could not be declared the head of the WTO because of the objection by the US, which cited lack of experience and procedural issues for its stance.
However Washington Trade Daily gave more insight into the United States objection to Okonjo-Iweala’s candidacy, saying that the Trump administration suspected her of being close to the Democratic Party.