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UN approves Costa Rica's Grynspan to head UN trade body

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. General Assembly on Friday approved the nomination of Costa Rican economist Rebecca Grynspan to head the U.N. agency promoting trade and development, the first woman and Central American to lead the Geneva-based organization.

She was nominated by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres as secretary-general of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, known as UNCTAD. It supports developing countries in their efforts to benefit from the globalized economy and to deal with potential drawbacks from economic integration.

Since 2014, Grynspan has been secretary-general of the Ibero-American General Secretariat, which supports preparations for Ibero-American summits. From 2010 to 2014, she was the deputy administrator of the United Nations Development Program.

She previously served as UNDP’s regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean, a member of the high-level panel on financing for development, and second vice president of Costa Rica from 1994 to 1998.

Grynspan called UNCTAD “a key partner for all countries facing the challenges of post-pandemic recovery,” adding, “I believe that, at this critical time, UNCTAD can make an essential contribution for a more just, sustainable and inclusive recovery for all.”

The Associated Press