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So the initial round of results are in and there were some surprises. Early this month, odds makers in the United Kingdom and Ireland had Mr. Kyerematen, from Ghana, and Ms. Gonzalez, from Costa Rica, as the favorites to become the next director-general of the World Trade Organization, but both are out after the first round of consultations. Mr. Hindawi of Jordan and Ms. Mohamed of Kenya have also withdrawn. That leaves three candidates from the Asia-Pacific region—Bark of South Korea, Groser of New Zealand, and Pangestu of Indonesia—and two from Latin America—Azevedo from Brazil and Blanco from Mexico.

But this is not a game. The WTO is facing big challenges that the next director-general will have to handle. You can still listen to our Wonkcasts with the remaining candidates, except for Mr. Groser who has not yet accepted. And for further discussion on the key challenges facing the next leader of the WTO, Bernard Hoekman and Petros Mavroidis from the European University Institute are hosting a debate, and you can join the discussion here. The next round of consultations will begin next week, and the final two should be announced by the end of the month.

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CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD does not take institutional positions.