Íñigo Méndez de Vigo

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Iñigo Méndez de Vigo
Iñigo Méndez de Vigo.jpg
Member of the European Parliament
for Spain
Assumed office
19 October 1992
Personal details
Born (1956-01-21) 21 January 1956 (age 66)
Tetuan, Morocco
Nationality  Spain
Political party Partido Popular
Parents Lieutenant-Colonel Íñigo Méndez de Vigo y del Arc;
Countess Paloma de Montojo y de Icaza y de León y Sureda
Residence Madrid, Spain
Religion Roman Catholic
Website www.mendezdevigo.com

Barón Íñigo Méndez de Vigo y Montojo (born 21 January 1956 at Tetuan, Morocco) is a Spanish politician and Minister for European Affairs in the Spanish Government since December 2011.[1]

Since 1992, Íñigo Méndez de Vigo has represented the Spanish People's Party as Member of the European Parliament and presently is a Bureau Member for the European People's Party. In 2009 he was appointed President of the College of Europe.

Childhood and education

Méndez de Vigo was born on 21 January 1956 in Tetuan (Morocco), then a Spanish Protectorate, where his father was serving as a Lieutenant in the Infantry. He is descended, amongst others, from the Marquesses of Cubas, the Dukes of Riánsares and María Cristina de Borbón, princesa de las Dos Sicilias,[2] and via his maternal grandmother, the novelist Carmen de Icaza,[3] he succeeded, in 1980, to her title as 9th Baron de Claret.[4]

He completed his schooling at the German School in Madrid, as well as studying French language at the Académie française and learning English at the British Institute School. He graduated in Law from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in 1978.

Following the completion of his military service with the rank of lieutenant and after passing the public exams, he became legal advisor to the Cortes Generales in 1981.


Political career

In 1982, at the age of 26, Méndez de Vigo was appointed director of interparliamentary relations for the Cortes Generales. In 1984 he accepted the position of special advisor to then-secretary general of the Council of Europe, Marcelino Oreja.

He joined the People's Party at its founding Conference in 1989, and stood unsuccessfully in that year as one of its candidates at the European election. In October 1992 he was elected a Member of the European Parliament, and has been returned to Brussels ever since. He has also served as a Member of the People's Party's National Steering Committee since 1992.

Méndez de Vigo has served as the European People's Party co-ordinator on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs since 1994 and on its Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, as well as:

  • Chairman of the EP Delegation to the Convention drafting the Charter of Fundamental Rights (1999–2000);
  • Chairman of the EP Delegation to the European Convention (2003–04);
  • EP representative to the IGC (2004);
  • Parliament's rapporteur (with Richard Corbett MEP) on the Treaty establishing a European Constitution (2004);
  • Parliament's rapporteur (with Richard Corbett MEP) on the Treaty of Lisbon.

Since his appointment to the Spanish Government in December 2011 by Mariano Rajoy Brey, Barón Méndez de Vigo has served as Secretary of State for the European Union.

Academic career

  • Lecturer in Constitutional Law (UCM, 1981–1984)
    • Lecturer in Community Law (1989–1991)
  • Jean Monnet Chair in European Institutions (UCM, 1999–2004)
    • Honorary Jean Monnet Chair (2004)


Méndez de Vigo has written numerous books and articles on Europe:

  • Una Reforma Fiscal para España, with José Manuel García-Margallo (Ed. Lid, 1996)
  • Financiación de las Comunidades Autónomas y Corresponsabilidad Fiscal, with José Manuel García-Margallo and Vicente Martínez-Pujalte (Fundación Bancaixa, 1996)
  • La Apuesta Europea: de la moneda a la Unión Política, with José Manuel García-Margallo (Ed. Política Exterior, 1998)
  • Europa paso a paso (2002)
  • El rompecabezas. Así redactamos la Constitución europea (Ed. Biblioteca Nueva and Real Instituto Elcano, 2005)
  • ¿Por qué una Constitución para Europa? 25 respuestas, with Marcelino Oreja and Juan Antonio Carrillo Salcedo (Ed. Real Academia de Ciencias Morales y Políticas, 2005)
  • Alegato por Europa (Ed. Biblioteca nueva, 2006)
  • Coordinator: ¿Qué fue de la Constitución europea? (Ed. Planeta, 2007)
  • Editor: Liber Amicorum Marcelino Oreja Aguirre (Ed. Cinterco, 2010)

Méndez de Vigo also writes for ABC, and is an online contributor for El Economista.

Honours and awards

Coronet of a Spanish baron




External links

Academic offices
Preceded by
Helle Thorning-Schmidt
Speaker at the College of Europe Opening Ceremony
Succeeded by
Mariano Rajoy