Ali Rodriguez Araque, former OPEC Secretary General, passes away

No 24/2018
Vienna, Austria
21 Nov 2018

It is with great sadness that OPEC has learnt of the passing of one of the Organization’s and Venezuela’s most respected and distinguished leaders, His Excellency Ali Rodriguez Araque.  The OPEC Secretariat extends its deepest and heartfelt condolences to the family of HE Rodriguez Araque, the President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, and the People's Minister of Petroleum, Manuel Salvador Quevedo Fernandez.

His Excellency, Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, OPEC Secretary General, said: “This is an enormously sad day, not only for his family, who are in our thoughts and prayers, but for his country and the entire OPEC family.  Ali Rodriguez Araque served our Organization with great distinction as OPEC Secretary General.  He was a very proud son of Venezuela, a man who loved his country and performed all his functions with great honour.”

HE Rodriguez was OPEC Secretary General between January 2001 and June 2002 and on leaving the Secretariat he penned some words for the OPEC Bulletin.  In this, he said: “I have learned that, despite our diverse cultures, our diverse origins and our diverse mother tongues, we share the same language of life and the same feelings … I have also learned here that the spirit of solidarity provides a firm foundation for both the present and the future of our extraordinary Organization.”

These words remain relevant today and clearly resonate in the current environment.  HE Rodriguez was an OPEC legend, a true believer in the goals of the Organization and a great disciple of the values inherent in cooperation.

During the late President Hugo Chavez’s 1999-2013 administration, HE Rodriguez Araque held high-level government posts, including Minister of Energy and Mines, Foreign Relations, Finance and Electric Energy.  He was also Secretary General of Unasur between 2012 and 2014.

At the time of his passing, HE Rodriguez Araque was Venezuelan Ambassador to Cuba, a post he had held since 2014.

HE Dr. Ali Rodriguez Araque

HE Dr. Ali Rodriguez Araque