Okonjo-Iweala says WTO is not irredeemable
The top contender for the Director-General of the World Trade Organisation, Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has urged the United States President Donald Trump not to pull the US from the world trade body.
Okonjo-Iweala told a press conference on Wednesday that Trump or whoever succeeds should not consider leaving the membership of WTO but instead support efforts to reform the Geneva-based body.
“Don’t leave now: let’s fix what needs fixing,” she said in response to a question about her message to the current president or any future U.S. president.
Okonjo-Iweala is one of eight candidates competing to become the trade watchdog’s next leader and has been taking questions from the WTO’s 164 members in Geneva this week.
She has based her campaigns on the need to reform the WTO to make it fit for 21st century trade.
In an opinion article in June titled: “Reviving the WTO” and published on UK based Project Syndicate, she argued that “the World Trade Organization is in the news mostly for the wrong reasons and that many people regard it as an ineffective policeman of an outdated rulebook that is unsuited for the challenges of the twenty-first-century global economy.”
Since her nomination early June by President Muhammadu Buhari, she has campaigned vigorously for the position, asking for support and promising to leverage decades of experience as an economist and especially at the World Bank to reposition the World Trade Organisation, and make it relevant for global trade.
Watch her campaign video below: