"Precisely the right person"

Berlin/New York (dpa) - The German government on Thursday welcomed the appointment of Achim Steiner, a dual citizen of Brazil and Germany, as administrator of The UN Development Programme (UNDP), ministers describing him as well suited to the post.

Speaking while on a trip to Iraq, Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said Steiner, who has wide experience working for UN and development agencies, was "precisely the right person" for the position, given his experience and passion for the work.

Development Aid Minister Gerd Mueller said: "Germany is increasingly taking responsibility - this is the message being received in the world."

The appointment of Steiner, 55, who was born in Brazil and studied in Britain before working for the Germany GTZ  development aid organization, was confirmed by the UN General Assembly in New York on Wednesday.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres proposed Steiner for the four-year post, one of the most senior at the UN, saying that he had "wide experience gained in senior management positions." with respect to the environment, social justice and economic development.

Steiner currently holds a lecturing post at Oxford University. He follows Helen Clark in the post.

He led the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) between 2006 and 2016. Born to German immigrants in Brazil, he has studied at top universities in Oxford, London, Harvard and Berlin.