The premier of Canada's most populous province has decided to resign after nine years in office.

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty said Monday that it's time for renewal and new ideas.

McGuinty won a third term last year, but his Liberal party was reduced to a minority of the seats in the Ontario legislature and must rely on the opposition to pass legislation.

McGuinty led his party for 16 years. He asked his party to call a leadership convention.

He says he'll stay on as party leader until a successor is sworn in and will remain a member of the legislature until the next election.

McGuinty made the surprise announcement at an emergency meeting of the Liberal caucus after his government faced a second contempt motion over two cancelled power plants