Amb. Yonov Fred Agah, PhD

Amb. Yonov Fred Agah, PhD

  • Speciality: Negotiation, Trade & Investment
  • Firm: Nigerian Office for Trade Negotiations
  • Experience: Decades
  • Email:

Ambassador Yonov Fred Agah, PhD, was born on 28th August 1956 at Igbor, Mbaikyu Council Ward, Gwer East Local Government Area, Benue State.

He was appointed as Director-General and Chief Trade Negotiator, Nigerian Office for Trade Negotiations (NOTN) by President Muhammadu Buhari, for an initial term of four years in March 2021. Before his current appointment, Ambassador Agah had served as a Deputy Director-General (DDG) at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in Geneva, Switzerland, from October 2013-March 2021.

Ambassador Agah also served as Nigeria’s Ambassador to the WTO, from July 2005-September 2013.  In that capacity, he served as the Alternate Chief Negotiator for the Doha Round, and Head of Nigeria’s Trade Office to the WTO in the Permanent Mission of Nigeria to the United Nations Office at Geneva.  The Trade Office is responsible for the coordination of Nigeria’s participation in Geneva-based trade-related international organisations, particularly the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), International Trade Centre (ITC) and the WTO.

He served as Chair of the WTO’s General Council in 2011; and was responsible for successfully organising the Eighth WTO Ministerial Conference (MC8).  He has also served as Chair of the following WTO bodies: Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) in 2010; Council for Trade in Services (CTS) in 2009; Trade Policy Review Body (TPRB) in 2008; Council for Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) in 2007; and Council for Trade in Goods (CTG) in 2006.  He was the Chair of the Council for TRIPS, Special Session, from 2012-2013. Ambassador Agah also served as a “Friend of the Chair” (Facilitator) for the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) negotiations, from 2012-2013.

Ambassador Agah had previously worked as Deputy Director (Multilateral) and Director of External Trade at the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment from 1991-2005; Field Manager, UTC PLC, from 1990-1991; Sales Manager, Benue Bottling Company Ltd, from 1984-1986; and Senior Features Writer/Circulation Manager, Benue Printing and Publishing Corporation, from 1982-1984.  He had previously lectured at Kaduna Polytechnic; Advanced Teachers’ College, Makurdi; and Federal College of Education (Technical), Gombe (NYSC).

Ambassador Agah had his early education at St. Anthony’s Primary School, Aduku, Gwer East Local Government Area, Benue State, from 1965-1968; and Holy Ghost Primary School, Makurdi, January–December 1969.  He attended Mt. St. Gabriel’s Secondary School, Makurdi from 1970-1974.  

He holds a Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) and Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Economics from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.  He obtained a Master of Business Administration (MBA) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Economics (International Trade) from the University of Jos.   Amb. Agah also has a Bachelor of Laws (LL. B) from the University of Abuja. 

Ambassador Agah has contributed to various books and journals.  He is married with children.

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