North Somerset’s MP nominated for World Trade Organisation role

PUBLISHED: 11:55 21 July 2020

Dr Liam Fox MP

Dr Liam Fox MP

Archant

North Somerset’s MP has been nominated by the UK to become director general of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Former International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox has been nominated to be the successor to Roberto Azevedo, due to be named in August.

Dr Fox said: “I am honoured to have been nominated by the Prime Minister to be a candidate to lead the WTO.

“I believe if we want to keep the WTO relevant and vibrant our task is clear – update, strengthen and reform.

“We must ensure global trade works for everyone. Trade is a way in which we spread prosperity more widely.

“That prosperity underpins social cohesion, that social cohesion in turn underpins political stability and that political stability is the building block of our collective security.”

The formal selection process for the new director general is run by the three most senior chairs of the WTO, the general council, trade policy review and the dispute settlement body. The successful candidate must attract a consensus from all member states and, once appointed, will serve a four-year term.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “As the world seeks to recover from the shared challenge of the coronavirus pandemic, the role of free and fair trade has never been more crucial.

“Dr Fox is a passionate advocate of multilateralism, who brings detailed knowledge of the global trading system from his years as a UK Cabinet Minister and Secretary of State for International Trade.

“He has first-hand experience of the political and technical challenges of negotiating trade agreements, and the reforms that are needed to ensure the global trading system truly delivers for all WTO members.”

Liz Truss, international trade secretary, added: “The new WTO Director General needs to be a fierce champion of free and fair trade, an advocate of multilateralism, and be able to get things done and increase the pace of reform.

“Dr Liam Fox brings all those things to the table.

“He is the ideal candidate to lead the WTO into a new era and help push forward much-needed modernisation of the organisation.”


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