TOKYO — When Roberto Azevedo announced his intent to resign as director-general of the World Trade Organization a year early, he may have felt relieved as the novel coronavirus pandemic ravaged economies.
The 62-year-old Brazilian career diplomat seemed noticeably at ease when he made the bombshell announcement via video link on May 14.
The Geneva-based organization has long championed free trade. Azevedo will step down from the top post at the end of August without serving out his four-year term.
One senior WTO official close to the head said that though Azevedo had held things together despite wanting to resign,