Dr. Mukhisa Kituyi, of Kenya, who became UNCTAD's seventh Secretary-General on 1 September 2013, has an extensive background as an elected official, an academic, and a holder of high government office. He also has wide-ranging experience in trade negotiations, and in African and broader international economics and diplomacy. Dr. Kituyi served as a researcher at Norway's Christian Michelsen Institute from 1989 to 1991, and as Programme Director of the African Centre for Technology Studies in Nairobi from 1991 to 1992. He was elected to the Kenyan Parliament in 1992, and was twice re-elected. He was Kenya's Minister of Trade and Industry from 2002 to 2007.
During this period, he chaired for two years the Council of Ministers of the COMESA and the African Trade Ministers' Council. He also served as chairman of the Council of Ministers of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States, and was lead negotiator for Eastern and Southern African ministers during the European Union-ACP Economic Partnership Agreement negotiations. He was convenor of the agriculture negotiations carried out at the World Trade Organization's Sixth Ministerial Conference held in Hong Kong, China in 2005.
Immediately prior to becoming Secretary-General, Dr. Kituyi was Chief Executive of the Kenya Institute of Governance, based in Nairobi. The Institute is a think tank and advocacy organization that focuses on linking academic research and the development of public policy.