CS Amina on Handling Trump, China Feud as WTO Director-General

  • Sports CS Amina Mohamed speaking at WTO Headquarters in Geneva Switzerland on July 16, 2020.
    Sports CS Amina Mohamed speaking at WTO Headquarters in Geneva Switzerland on July 16, 2020.
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  • Sports CS Amina Mohamed on Thursday, July 16, outlined her vision if selected to be the Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

    Speaking to the press at WTO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, CS Amina tackled a number of global issues including the trade tensions between US and China.

    "If I get selected as the Director-General, when it comes to settling the feud, like with other member countries, I will encourage the use of the WTO rules. There are guidelines set in resolving issues and tensions.

    "There are interministerial rules and conflict resolution strategies recommended in the rules to resolve tensions and feuds that pertain to trade. That's what I would do," former WTO General Council chair stated.

    Sports CS Amina Mohamed speaking at WTO headquarters at Geneva, Switzerland on July 16, 2020
    Sports CS Amina Mohamed speaking at WTO headquarters at Geneva, Switzerland on July 16, 2020.
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    WTO

    Her response was viewed to be on the safe side considering Kenya has deep ties with both countries with reports by Nikkei Asian Review - the world's largest financial newspaper indicating that China was rooting for the Kenyan Minister as the US backed her opponent Tim Groser, a former New Zealand trade minister for the post.

    According to the publication, Groser is likely to push trade body reforms that Washington had advocated for. 

    At the same time, Kenya is in the process of signing a Free Trade Area agreement with the US which CS Amina noted was an important step in promoting global trade.

    "The agreement will not interefere with the current agreements Kenya has with other partners, as a matter of fact it will provide a blueprint for other African countries to make deals with the US," she assured.

     The WTO has had six directors-generals. The last four appointments have alternated between candidates from developing and developed nations.

    WTO headquarters at Geneva Switzerland.
    WTO headquarters at Geneva Switzerland.
    China Daily

    There are three African candidates, two from Asia, two from Europe and one from the Americas.

    Africa's trio are former Nigerian foreign and finance minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala; Egyptian former diplomat Hamid Mamdouh; and Kenya's former Foreign Affairs Minister Amina Mohamed.

    CS Amina expressed that Africa presenting three candidates rather than one was a show of how vested the continent was at acquiring leadership positions in global bodies.

    "Having many candidates should not be taken as weakness rather a show of strength and how serious we are to take WTO. We are all accomplished in our own rights," she added.