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MENAFN - Saudi Press Agency - 31/01/2013

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(MENAFN - Saudi Press Agency) African and Latin American governments could back each other's nominees for the top post at the World Trade Organization (WTO), dpa quoted Kenya's candidate as indicating Wednesday in Geneva. Such an agreement could mean that the four nominees who are from neither of these two regions could drop out earlier in the race.

Kenya's Amina Mohamed, currently deputy chief of the UN Environment Programme, was asked by reporters in Geneva whether such a deal was possible.

Mohamed said she planned to travel to Latin American countries to win support. 'There are issues that we will need to discuss, including the issue you raised at first,' said the former Kenyan WTO envoy.

The organization's member countries are aiming for a consensus in the coming months on who will succeed current WTO Director General Pascal Lamy, following this week's hearings for the nine candidates.

The candidates with the weakest support are expected to drop out of the race one by one.

There are three Latin American nominees, from Brazil, Costa Rica and Mexico. The two African hopefuls are from Kenya and Ghana. In addition, officials from Jordan, Indonesia, South Korea and New Zealand are also in the race.

New Zealand's nominee, Trade Minister Tim Groser, said he was seeking support from developing countries who are interested in reviving the stalled Doha development and trade talks, rather than those who simply want a developing-country official as WTO chief.

'If it is a foreign policy question that we are trying to address in the choice of a director general, then I'm not the answer,' he said.

 






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