Thus the 62-year-old diplomat from South Korea, with nearly 40 years' experience, will most probably succeed Kofi Annan whose second five-year term in office ends December 31, 2006. The formal vote in the Security Council is to be held in a week's time.
Apart from Ban Ki-Moon, representatives of India, Thailand, Jordan and Sri-Lanka are running in the race for the post of UN Secretary-General. Yet another candidate aspiring for the post is Latvia's president Vaira Vike-Freiberga, but her chances to get the job are virtually nil.
Notably, more than 30 years passed since the UN had last been headed by an Asian. It is generally hoped that Kofi Annan would be succeeded by a representative of just that part of the world.