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Clark up one in Forbes power rankings

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 6/06/2016

Former prime minister Helen Clark has climbed one spot to be ranked the 22nd most powerful woman in the world, according to Forbes Magazine.

The 66-year-old, who is seeking to become United Nations secretary general later this year, is still considered to be less powerful than Oprah Winfrey (21, down from 12) on the list, calculated on money, media presence, spheres of influence and impact.

The one place gain appears to be helped by the disappearance from this year's list of entertainer Beyonce Knowles and suspended Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff.

The ranking is again headed by German chancellor Angela Merkel and US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

Forbes describes Miss Clark, who was ranked 50th in 2011, as the most powerful woman in the United Nations, leading the UN Development Programme.

"Helen Clark uses her global bully pulpit and billions in funds to assist development and humanitarian efforts around the world," the magazine said.

She had been credited for bringing greater efficiency to her agency, is considered a front-runner for the role.

However, it also notes there are allegations her agency retaliated against one of its own employees for helping to prepare a report sharply critical of its response to the 2009 atrocities in Sri Lanka.

One of her rivals for the job, Bulgaria's Irina Bokova, is ranked 89th.

Miss Clark is the only New Zealander on the list. The only Australian on the list is mining magnate Gina Rinehart, ranked 51st.

Top 10:

1. Angela Merkel, Germany, politics

2. Hillary Clinton, US, politics

3. Janet Yellen, US, finance

4. Melinda Gates, US, philanthropy/NGO

5. Mary Barra, US, automotive

6. Christine Lagarde, France, economy

7. Sheryl Sandberg, US, technology

8. Susan Wojcicki, US, technology

9. Meg Whitman, US, technology

10. Ana Patricia Botin, Spain, finance

Others:

13. Michelle Obama, US, politics

21. Oprah Winfrey, US, entertainment

22. Helen Clark, NZ, philanthropy/NGO

29. Queen Elizabeth II, UK, politics

51. Gina Rinehart, Australia, metals and mining

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