Former New Zealand Prime Minister and World Trade Organisation director-general Mike Moore passed away at the age of 71 on Sunday.
Moore was at his home in Auckland when he died, his wife Yvonne Moore said.
Moore served as prime minister with Labour from September to November in 1990, at the age of 41, installed by caucus just weeks before the 1990 general election, replacing Sir Geoffrey Palmer.
He had a long political career in New Zealand but his tenure as prime minister was for just two months in 1990 before he was defeated in an election. Moore also served five years as New Zealand’s ambassador to the US before suffering a stroke in 2015.
He survived three bouts of cancer as a young man but had been in declining health in recent years following a stroke in 2015.
He grew up in New Zealand’s Northland region in the far north and wanted to spend his final months there, but had to return to Auckland in January because of his health.
Moore served as third director-general of the WTO from 1999 to 2002, overseeing China’s entry into the rules-based trading system and the infamous “Battle in Seattle” protest riots.
The ex-prime ministers club is small enough, but Bolger and Moore were also both New Zealand Ambassadors to the US and both entered parliament in 1972.
He launched the Doha Development Round in 2001 aimed at lowering trade barriers globally and was New Zealand’s ambassador to Washington from 2010 to 2015.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern expressed her grief on Moore’s demise, saying, she had been “incredibly lucky” to have seen Moore on Friday.
She further said Moore had dedicated his life to serving the country. “The world lost a man with a huge intellect, and huge heart, today.”
Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters also condoled his death and described him as “one of the great New Zealanders”.
“Mike spent every day of his life trying to make things better for New Zealand and New Zealanders,” Peters further added.
Moore was a “rare politician” where politics improved his outlook, he added. He never stopped learning and worked to evolve his views over time.
Moore was born in Whakatane in 1949, and his earliest work was in the construction and printing industries, at the freezing works, and as a trade union researcher.