Jesus Seade is a strong candidate to lead WTO, Mexico says

Mr Seade was nominated to the post of director-general of the WTO by the country’s president Andrés Obrador this month

FILE PHOTO: A logo is pictured outside the World Trade Organization (WTO) headquarters next to a red traffic light in Geneva, Switzerland, October 2, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse/File Photo

The nomination of Jesus Seade to lead the World Trade Organisation (WTO) is a sign of the country's commitment to the multilateral order, according to a statement from Mexico’s ministry of foreign relations.

Mr Seade, who is currently the WTO's deputy secretary for North America, was nominated for the post of director-general of the WTO by Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador earlier this month.

“Mexico is nominating a strong candidate with the experience and ability to represent the best global interests in free trade, at a key moment for protecting and promoting multilateralism and international cooperation,” it said.

Mr Seade played a key part in renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement with the United States and Canada, which is scheduled to come into effect from July.

The WTO post will become vacant at the end of August after incumbent Roberto Azevedo, from Brazil, said he would step down a year early.

Mr Seade “has an extensive understanding of the economies and trade dynamics in Africa, Latin America, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and North America, and well-established relationships with the leading actors in world trade,” the statement said.  “His long experience in the most important international economic organisations —including the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the World Trade Organisation itself— is a proven track record of his abilities within these key multilateral trade institutions.”

He also represented Mexico as the chief negotiator to the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations that led to the creation of the WTO in 1995 and served as its founding deputy director-general.

Mr Seade worked as a senior adviser at the IMF and was responsible for managing the Washington-based lender’s policies on the financial crises in Argentina, Turkey and Brazil.

The senior official from Mexico studied Chemical Engineering at the National Autonomous University of Mexico and received both a master's and doctoral degrees in economics from the University of Oxford, England.

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