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WTO DG: Okonjo-Iweala Will Carry Out Broad Reform If Elected – Expert

A Trade Expert, Dr Sand Mba-Kalu, has said that electing Ngozi Okonjo Iweala as Director-General of World Trade Organisation (WTO) would address critical pending issues and bring a comprehensive reform in the organisation. 

Mba-Kalu, Executive Director, Africa International Trade and Commerce Research, said this in an interview with NAN on Sunday in Abuja. He noted that critical among the issues to be addressed was the negotiation concerning Doha Development Agenda (DDA). “The U.S. opposes her selection by almost all the member countries of WTO but there is a strong possibility that the outcome of the U. S. election will favour her emergence as the first female and African D-G of WTO. 

“The African group in WTO would want her to address issues regarding the Doha round negotiation on agriculture package. “In spite of several efforts by the U.S. and other developed countries to undermine the DDA, the African Group stood its ground that it is paramount that the aspect of the negotiation has to be concluded. “Because it has to do with food security, subsidy on agriculture which distorts trade, employment, et cetera,” he said. 

The expert disclosed that the African Group was demanding a special safeguard mechanism for developing countries, adding that it was one thing she must find a way to address. Another thing she has to address, according to him, is China’s status as a developing nation, we all know China is a developed nation and should not keep the trade preferential treatment of a developing nation.

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