World Trade Organization Director General Pascal Lamy looks set to win re-election to a second four-year term because no country has put forth an alternative candidate.
A former French government official who also served as the European Union trade commissioner, Lamy announced last year that he would run for re-election when his current term expires in August. According to a WTO spokesman although the 153 member countries had the opportunity to offer candidates until Dec. 31, 2008, none did.
The WTO director general's job has diminished in stature has result of the group's failure to complete the Doha round of trade negotiations during the seven years since they were launched. In the past, competition for the WTO director general's job has been vigorous, but it now seems no one wants to be in the hot seat.
After announcing in mid-December that WTO members lacked agreement to call a meeting of trade ministers, Lamy said he would continue to push for completion of the round in 2009 while also trying to broaden the WTO's portfolio. That effort includes monitoring trade measures taken in relation to the financial crisis, tracking trade finance, and providing aid to developing countries that want to increase trade.