Brexiteer Liam Fox progresses to next round in race to be World Trade Organisation chief
- Credit: Victoria Jones/PA.
Disgraced former defence secretary Liam Fox has made it through to the second round of the race to become the next director general of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
Liz Truss, his successor at the Department for International Trade, announced that Dr Fox, the UK’s nominee for the top job has successfully navigated the first round of voting among the 164 WTO members.
The trade body is currently in the process of electing a replacement for outgoing boss Roberto Azevedo.
A new director general is not expected to be elected for several weeks, after two more rounds of the contest.
Trade secretary Truss said: “I’m delighted to see Dr Fox through to the second round. The world needs a WTO director general that will stand up for free trade and fight protectionism.
You may also want to watch:
“Business as usual will not work. We need someone with political skill who can build consensus, get things done, and drive forward the urgent reform that is needed.
“Liam is the ideal candidate for that. His energetic campaign has won the support of countries around the world, and I wish him all the very best in the next round.”
- 1 Betty Boothroyd delivers scathing assessment of Boris Johnson's government
- 2 House of Lords defies No 10 and votes to heavily defeat Boris Johnson's Brexit bill
- 3 German MEP tells Boris Johnson he 'owes' Britons a Brexit deal as she urged a return to EU trade talks
- 4 Boris Johnson 'plans to resign' in six months because he can't live on £150k salary
- 5 Leaked memo exposes government fears over rise in support for Scottish independence
- 6 UK Business leaders describe Brexit call with Boris Johnson and Michael Gove as 'pointless'
- 7 ERG MP says Boris Johnson should consider cutting ties with Church of England following Brexit row
- 8 Diane Abbott accuses Keir Starmer of having 'other motives' while shadow Brexit secretary
- 9 Tory minister branded 'disgraceful' after dismissing child hunger in Britain as something that has 'been going on for years'
- 10 Fool's gold? Nigel Farage wants you to invest your trust in his financial advice service
The North Somerset MP has held ministerial roles under Sir John Major, David Cameron and Theresa May, latterly serving as international trade secretary during the Brexit negotiations.
He was an ardent supporter of the UK’s exit from the EU and, despite being sacked from the cabinet by Boris Johnson on his arrival in Downing Street last year, he was handed the UK’s WTO nomination in July.
Senior Tory Dr Fox has called for the global trade body to look to a candidate with political experience for its next director general.
In a statement, he said: “The WTO needs leadership at the top with an unswerving belief in the power of open markets to drive economic development and prosperity.
“It is one of the world’s great institutions. It has tremendous technical expertise, a wealth of experience and a long institutional memory.
“But it lacks political momentum at a time when most of the blockages in the global trading system are political and will need to be sorted out in national capitals as well as in Geneva.
“I see the role of the DG as building bridges and rebuilding trust across the world.”
Last month it was reported that hackers stole Fox’s entire personal email account giving the Russians access to secret government documents.
Become a Supporter
The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.