Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has a clearer opportunity to become the first female Director General of World Trade Organization(WTO) as South Korean trade minister Yoo Myung-hee on Friday abandoned her bid to become head of WTO.

Yoo had consulted with the United States — her prime backer — and other major countries and “decided to renounce her candidacy”, South Korea’s trade ministry said in a statement.

The process to name a successor to Roberto Azevedo had been deadlocked since October when key WTO ambassadors tapped Okonjo-Iweala as the best pick to lead the organisation but the Trump administration maintained its opposition to her appointment.

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The WTO head is normally chosen by consensus, leaving the process at a standstill.

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