World Trade Organization

Regional News • World
Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala confirmed as WTO's new Director General
DG selection process 2020- Press conference - Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Nigeria
DG selection process 2020- Press conference - Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Nigeria Credit: World Trade Organization/Jay Louvion, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0)

The World Trade Organization has confirmed Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, a Nigerian-American economist and international development expert, as its new director general. She is the first female and the first African to hold this position.

Diversity & Inclusion
Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, a black african woman, to become head of the Wold Trade Organization
Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, a black african woman, to become head of the Wold Trade Organization
Credit: By the International Monetary Fund - http://www.imf.org/external/photo/allphoto.asp?g=52 (Public Domain)

Economist Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala of Nigeria looks set to become the first woman, and moreover the first black woman, to head the World Trade Organization (WTO). Trump had previously blocked her appointment, but Biden has now come out clearly in favor of Okonjo-Iweala. While Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is making history simply by being the first woman - and from Africa to boot - to head the WTO, says Nigeria's Amara Nwankpa, she is not only bringing "diversity and inclusion" to the international stage.

During her second term as finance minister, Okonjo-Iweala was "seen as a driving force behind the development of reform programs that helped improve government transparency and stabilize the economy", according to the US business magazine Forbes, which ranked her among the top 50 Power Women worldwide in 2015. Okonjo-Iweala will thus "bring to the new job impressive negotiating skills and leadership to address key issues facing the planet today", finds Amara Nwankpa of the Nigerian Public Policy Initiative.

Regional News • Europe
No-deal Brexit now a 'strong possibility' according to Boris Johnson
No-deal Brexit now a 'strong possibility' according to Boris Johnson
Credit: 10 Downing Street / via Wikimedia Commons (Open Government Licence v3.0)

The British Prime Minister Johnson no longer considers a deal likely - but wants to continue negotiating.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is dampening expectations for a trade deal between the United Kingdom and the European Union. "There is now a high probability that we will get a solution similar to Australia's relationship with the EU, rather than one similar to the Canada-Europe relationship," Johnson said.

Australia and the European Union currently trade based on the rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO) which would equate a no-deal brexit.