UN’s trade body appoints first lady secretary general

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Geneva

The United Nations appointed Rebeca Grynspan from Costa Rica on Saturday as the new secretary general of its trade and development body, UNCTAD.

Grynspan is the first woman and central American to head the global body that deals with trade, investment and development issues, the UNCTAD said in a statement.

“I look forward to bringing my experience and commitment to development to this unique organisation, whose history, mandate and recognised world-class expertise make it a key partner for all countries facing the challenges of post pandemic recovery,” Grynspan said.

The appointment comes as the global trade charts a gradual recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic, which tipped the world’s economy into the deepest recession since the 1930s.

But stimulus measures and an accelerated pace of vaccine rollout in many countries are improving the economic outlook.

Global trade grew by 10 per cent in the first quarter of 2021, driven by strong exports from East Asian economies, UNCTAD said last month. It is set to increase by 8 per cent this year, according to the World Trade Organisation.

Grynspan has previously held several high-level positions such as the under-secretary-general of the United Nations and Associate Administrator of the UNDP.—TLTP

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