(Bloomberg) -- New Zealand Finance Minister Grant Robertson said he will vacate his Wellington Central seat and instead run on the Labour Party list in this year’s election.

“I am putting myself forward to be a list only candidate, campaigning for the re-election of the Labour Government and to being Finance Minister next term under the leadership of Chris Hipkins,” Robertson said in a Facebook post Friday in Wellington. “Being Minister of Finance is a huge job, and does often draw you away from electorate responsibilities. I am particularly conscious of that now as the country enters a challenging economic period.”

Robertson has been the member of parliament for Wellington Central since 2008. Becoming a list MP means he would not trigger a by-election should he decide to retire from politics after the Oct. 14 general election in the event of a Labour defeat. His decision comes just days after the shock resignation of former prime minister Jacinda Ardern.

“As we have been farewelling Jacinda in recent days I know there has been a mixture of emotions,” Robertson said. “Gratitude for her work, sadness at her leaving the role, but excitement about a new leadership team and the opportunity ahead at this election. I genuinely believe that Labour is on the right track to win the election.”

Read More: Chris Hipkins Confirmed as New Zealand’s Next Prime Minister

Under New Zealand’s system of proportional representation, politicians can stand either in an electorate or on their party’s list. The number of list candidates that get into parliament is determined by the proportion of the “party vote” each party receives.

As a senior member of the government, Robertson will be placed high on Labour’s list and is assured of being returned to parliament whatever the outcome of the election. 

©2023 Bloomberg L.P.