All 164 member states agreed to nominate in a digital meeting. Most recently, the last major hurdle appeared to have been overcome, when the United States officially announced its support for Africa.
Under former President Donald Trump, the United States continues to pose problems in the search for a new head of the international court in trade disputes. While Okonjo-Iweala enjoyed widespread support from members of the World Trade Organization, the White House banned her nomination due to her preference for the other remaining candidate, South Korean Yu Myung-hee.
Under Trump’s leadership, the United States has become less concerned about the World Trade Organization. The US government’s refusal to appoint new members to the organisation’s main disputes committee effectively crippled the body.
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Okonjo Ewel, 66, was previously Minister of Finance and Foreign Affairs of her country, Nigeria. She has also worked as a development economist and World Bank executive.
The top position in the World Trade Organization was unexpectedly released in August with the resignation of Brazilian Roberto Azevedo, a year before his term expired. Initially, Dutch Minister Sigrid Kaag (Foreign Trade) was traded as her successor, but she announced that it was not available.