United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, following consultations with the Chairpersons of the regional groups of Member States, requested the General Assembly to confirm Rebeca Grynspan of Costa Rica as the next Secretary-General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). The General Assembly confirmed the nomination on 11 June 2021.
Ms. Grynspan will succeed Mukhisa Kituyi of Kenya to whom the Secretary-General is deeply grateful for his commitment and dedicated service in leading UNCTAD. The Secretary-General also wishes to extend his appreciation to the Deputy Secretary-General of UNCTAD, Isabelle Durant of Belgium, who will continue to serve as Acting Secretary-General until Ms. Grynspan assumes this position.
Ms. Grynspan is currently Secretary-General of the Ibero-American Conference, a position she has held since 2014. Prior to becoming Secretary-General, she was appointed as Associate Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in 2010. She served as UNDP Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean from 2006 to 2010 and was Director of the Subregional headquarters in Mexico for the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) from 2001 to 2006.
Prior to joining the United Nations, Ms. Grynspan held several ministerial level positions with her government, including as Minister of Housing, Minister Coordinator of Economic and Social Affairs and Deputy Minister of Finance, before becoming Vice-President of the Republic of Costa Rica from 1994 to 1998.
Ms. Grynspan holds a degree in Economics from the University of Costa Rica and a Master of Science degree in Economics from the University of Sussex. She has been awarded a Doctorate Honoris Causa by the University of Salamanca, the University of Extremadura and the European University of Madrid. Ms. Grynspan is fluent in English and Spanish.