The Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), Roberto Azevedo, has announced that he will resign on 31 August, a year earlier than planned.
Azevedo has headed the Geneva-based trade body since 2013. He has been serving a second term which was scheduled to end in August 2021.
According to his statement, he has made this decision for personal reasons and in the interests of the WTO.
"Regardless of how fulfilling these last 7 years have been for me, I must now end this cycle. As members start to shape the WTO's agenda for the new post-COVID realities, they should do so with a new Director-General," the director-general wrote.
The WTO is the largest international economic organisation in the world. It was officially founded on 1 January 1995 when 123 nations signed the Marrakesh Agreement which replaced the 1948 General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade.