For use of information media - Not an official record

Geneva, Switzerland, 18 November 2005

Dirk Bruinsma, a high-ranking economic official in the Dutch government, has been appointed as Deputy Secretary-General of UNCTAD. He will take up his new post on 1 January 2006.

The appointment was made by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan on the recommendation of UNCTAD Secretary-General Supachai Panitchpakdi.

Mr. Bruinsma currently serves as Director-General of Foreign Economic Relations in the Ministry of Economic Affairs of the Netherlands. Following a long career in the Ministry of Finance and the private sector, including managing his own consulting firm, he joined the Ministry of Economic Affairs in 1995 as Deputy Secretary-General. In that capacity he was economic advisor to the government, serving as general manager of the ministry and its agencies. He was appointed to his present post in 2000, where his responsibilities include trade policy, European economic relations and bilateral economic relations. He has a special interest in development cooperation and headed the Dutch delegation to the economic policy committees of the European Union and OECD. He became a full member of the EU Trade Policy Committee in 2000.

In his various posts at the Ministry of Finance, where he worked from 1976 to 1991, Mr. Bruinsma specialized in transport and public works; industrial policy and energy policy; development cooperation; and defence, agriculture and fisheries.

From 1991 to 1994 he was Deputy Chairman of the Executive Board of the Netherlands Credit Insurance Company (NCM) and Chairman of the Board of NCM-Netherlands. He worked as an independent consultant from 1994 to 1995.

In addition to his government service, Mr. Bruinsma has also served on several supervisory boards in banking, industry and the public sector, and is a member of the board of several cultural and charitable organizations.

Mr. Bruinsma holds Master´s Degrees in Mathematics and Dutch and International Law, both from Leyden University. He was born in The Hague in 1950.

His immediate predecessor as Deputy Secretary-General of UNCTAD was Carlos Fortin (Chile), who served the organization from 1990 to his retirement last September.