OPEC offers it condolences on the sad passing of Francisco R. Parra

Vienna, Austria, 18 December 2020--It was with great sadness that OPEC has learnt of the passing of one of the Organization’s and the petroleum industry’s most respected leaders and scholars, HE Dr. Francisco R. Parra from Venezuela. The OPEC Secretariat extends its deepest and heartfelt condolences to his family and friends.

HE Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, OPEC Secretary General, said: “This is an extremely sad day for the entire OPEC family. Francisco Parra was a legendary oil industry man, a former OPEC Secretary General who helped advance one of the Organization’s most important declarations, and a technocrat and economist whose acclaimed book on the industry, ‘Oil Politics, a Modern History of Petroleum’, is widely revered.”

Dr. Parra was born in Caracas, Venezuela in 1929 and was involved with OPEC throughout much of the Organization’s first decade in the 1960s. He served as the fifth OPEC Secretary General in 1968 for the then statutory period of one year. It was a seminal year for the Organization, with Dr. Parra leading a team to evolve a statement of principles and specific objectives to help guide the fledgling Organization. This led to the adoption of the ‘Declaratory Statement of Petroleum Policy in Member Countries’ at the 16th Meeting of the OPEC Conference in Vienna on 24–25 June.

The provisions of the ‘Declaratory Statement’ were built upon the inalienable right of all countries to exercise permanent sovereignty over their indigenous natural resources in the interests of national development and incorporated nine basic principles. In later years the ‘Declaratory Statement’ became a byword for a turning point in OPEC’s history and in the policies of its Member Countries, by providing vision and intellectual weight to OPEC’s decisions.

In 2004, Dr. Parra published the acclaimed book ‘Oil Politics, a Modern History of Petroleum’  drawing on his long experience in the oil world and giving an insider’s view of OPEC’s activities and the challenges it faced during its first few decades. It charts the ever-shifting dynamics amongst major oil producers, major oil companies, as well as examining their relationships with major oil importing countries.

Dr. Parra also served in various management and directorship roles, including with PDVSA, Arthur D. Little, the International Energy Development Corporation and Energy Economics Research, Ltd.

HE Dr. Francisco R. Parra, former OPEC Secretary General

HE Dr. Francisco R. Parra, former OPEC Secretary General