Home GENERAL NEWS CS Amina outlines WTO transformation agenda in pitch for DG slot » Capital News

CS Amina outlines WTO transformation agenda in pitch for DG slot » Capital News

by biasharadigest

NAIROBI, Kenya July 17 — Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed says she is the best candidate for the World Trade Organization (WTO) Director General’s post due to her vast experience in the field of diplomacy.

While sharing her vision for the organization at the agency’s General Council on Thursday where she presented her plans for the global trade body, Amina said her work in multilateral trade relations and negotiations will set the agency on a transformative path.

“My vision is one of reforming the organization, is one of recovery, renewal and is one for getting results for the multilateral trading system,” she said.

This will be the second attempt by the former Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary to vie for the plum position in the global body after her first attempt in 2013 flopped. She had contested against eight other candidates including one from Ghana.

The former Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary has however, exuded confidence that she has what it takes this time to clinch the position as she banks on the Africa region’s support.

Amina served as the Chairperson of the General Council in 2015, the highest-level decision-making organ of the WTO comprising envoys from member states.

She also served as head of the Dispute Settlement Body and Trade Policy Review Body.

“I know this institution, I am passionate about it, I know the corridors I have walked them and I have negotiated in them and I think its one of the most amazing institutions for multilateral negotiations, for country’s to come together agree on concrete outcomes for the multilateral trading system,” she said.

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Amina is contesting against five other candidates, including two from Africa.

The other five contestants for the top post are former Nigerian Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Egyptian commercial law academic Abdel-Hamid Mamdouh, Jesús Seade Kuri of Mexico, Moldova’s Tudor Ulianovschi and Yoo Myung-hee of South Korea.

With her sights focused on succeeding the outgoing WTO Director-General Roberto Azevedo, Amina has maintained that she has what it takes to revive stalled trade talks, lay the ground for the 2021 ministerial conference — one of the WTO’s major events — and thaw relations with Washington.

“I am running on my experience, my vision for the organization and my commitment to reform. Every country wants to walk away feeling that they have achieved and that is what the WTO does for its members,” she said.

The WTO Director-General is appointed through consensus, meaning contending nations will have to do lots of horse-trading ahead of the decision on August 31.

The Geneva-based agency was formed in 1995 with a core mandate to guide international trade and arbitrates disputes.

President Uhuru Kenyatta endorsed Amina for the job, saying she is uniquely qualified to lead the global organization.

The President reiterated that Amina understands WTO and its processes, having chaired all its high-level decision-making bodies when she was the Council chair.

“My experience working with her over the years and watching her work with others has convinced me that she is an effective leader and without doubt, a master consensus builder. She listens to advice and works hard always to find common ground,” he said.

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Since the WTO was created in 1995, three of its directors-general were from Europe, while one each came from Oceania, Asia and South America.

Africa fancies its chances this time, even though there is no regional rotation principle at the global trade body.

African nations have so far failed to coalesce around a single candidate.

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