Isabelle Durant – The new acting head of UNCTAD

Isabelle Durant

Isabelle Durant assumed her role as the acting Secretary-General of UNCTAD on 16 February. Earlier she served as the Deputy Secretary-General for the organisation.

Ms. Durant said, “I am deeply honoured to lead UNCTAD at this critical time as countries all over the world battle a deadly pandemic and the worst economic crisis in nearly a century.”

Durant was the former Vice Prime Minister and Senator of Belgium as well as Vice President of the European Parliament. Once an advocate for gender equality, she is well known for her skills in empowering people, supporting government towards good governance, and participation in many election observation missions.

Talking about her experiences, she is a multi-dynamic person. She doesn’t limit herself to leadership positions in governance. Durant graduated as a nurse, then became a vocational trainer for the care sector, and worked with schools in working-class districts.

She has been actively involved in the socio-economic response of the UN to the coronavirus crisis.

She has made immense contributions to the economy by being a member of the Economic Affairs Committee where she was involved in innovation, sharing, and circular economy. She is committed to working with all stakeholders to ensure the people served by the organisation get the support they need during the crisis and on the path to recovery.