The Daily, www.thedaily-ng.com, a widely read energy-pro online newspaper has commiserated with the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC at the passing on of Dr. Alirio Parra, former Energy and Mines Minister of Venezuela.
In a statement issued in Lagos, Nigeria, The Daily, www.thedaily-ng.com, stated that: ‘’It is with great pain that we learnt about the passing on of Dr. Alirio Parra.”
The statement signed by its managing editor, Eyo Nsima stated: ‘’Para was a rare gem who used his intellectual and professional experiences to enrich discussions at many global fora, including the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC and Nigeria Oil and Gas Conference and Exhibition.
‘’Indeed, his contributions culminated in the development of many flagship projects and programmes around the world.
‘’He would greatly be missed by his family, OPEC, other organisations and associates globally. Now that Parra has passed on, let us work harder to uphold the good values that he lived for.
‘’Let us also continue where he stopped, thus ensuring that we make the oil and gas industry better in all nations of the world, especially in OPEC-member states.’’
In his earlier statement, His Excellency, Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, OPEC Secretary General, had indicated that: ‘’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 and legendary leaders, Dr. Alirio Parra. The OPEC Secretariat extends its deepest and heartfelt condolences to the family of Dr. Parra.
“This is an extremely sad day, not only for his family, his wife Sally and their children, who are in our thoughts and prayers, but for the entire OPEC family which Dr. Parra was a founding member and remained a treasured part of his entire life. But we should also recall the great life of this quintessential gentleman: one of the great men of the industry, a proud son of Venezuela and a citizen of the world, a scholar, a real oil man – and, to many of us, a very dear friend.
‘’Dr. Parra was a true OPEC pioneer, an oil industry innovator, a man who was always willing to share his great wisdom with others, and a witness to many historic OPEC moments, including the establishment of the Organization at the historic Baghdad meeting in 1960.
‘’At the time of OPEC’s founding, Dr. Parra was an assistant to Venezuela’s legendary Minister of Mines and Hydrocarbons, Juan Pablo Pérez Alfonzo. It would prove to be the beginning of a long and distinguished career; one with many great accomplishments spanning several decades.’’
Barkindo had added that: ‘’Early in his career, as a member of the Presidential Commission on Oil Nationalisation in 1975, he participated in the creation of Petroleos de Venezuela S.A., or PDVSA. In fact, as a founding Board Member of PDVSA, he spent 15 years helping to shape the company into an efficient, global commercial enterprise.
‘’In this, he modernised PDVSA’s downstream sector and revamped the entire refinery sub-sector, while also making sure the company was more efficiently integrated into world markets. He also initiated and facilitated the development of Orinoco heavy crude.
‘’Dr. Parra was Venezuela’s Minister of Energy and Mines from 1992–94 and during this period he also served as President of the OPEC Conference. These eminent achievements alone are venerable but over the years Dr. Parra was involved with many other professional activities.
‘’He was a former President of the International Association of Energy Economists (1988), Chairman of the British Institute of Energy Economics (1997) and the Oxford Energy Policy Club (1984-95). He was also a former President of the Latin American Energy Organization (OLADE) and a Member of the International Advisory Board of the French oil company, Total.’’