Miguel Rodríguez Mendoza died in Geneva on Sunday 25 April. He was a senior member of former WTO Director-General Mike Moore’s management team from 1999 to 2002.
Miguel Rodríguez was an “astute and politically savvy trade specialist”, WTO Director-General Okonjo-Iweala said. “He helped to advance the trade policy agenda during difficult times for the WTO. He will be sorely missed by the WTO community. My thoughts are with his family and friends.”
During his tenure as Deputy Director-General, Miguel Rodríguez Mendoza oversaw work on agriculture, economic research, trade policy reviews and the WTO’s General Council. He joined Mike Moore because of his wealth of experience with trade negotiations and trade policy making. Miguel Rodríguez successfully led Venezuela’s accession to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) in 1990 and was Minister of State and President of Venezuela’s Institute of Foreign Trade. Until 1998, he was the Chief Trade Advisor at the Organization of American States (OAS), after which he worked as a trade consultant. He chaired six WTO dispute settlement panels and was a member of three others.
Miguel Rodríguez had a passion for teaching and for mentoring new generations of trade officials. Being very approachable, he was always willing to share his knowledge and experience.
Miguel Rodríguez is survived by his wife, Josefina, and his children Gabriela and Miguel Ignacio.