Rabat, October 3, 2012
Rabat, October 3, 2012
Morocco and Spain expressed, on Wednesday in Rabat, their commitment to strengthening and diversifying the relations of bilateral cooperation and partnership.
Government leaders of the two countries, Abdelilah Benkirane and Mariano Rajoy, stressed at the opening of the entrepreneurial Morocco-Spain meeting, the strong commitment of both governments to give a strong impetus to bilateral relations and trade between the two countries.
Abdelilah Benkirane stressed that the Moroccan government has a special interest in strengthening relations of cooperation with partner countries of the Kingdom, adding that the meeting, which comes three months after the 7th Forum of Investment and business cooperation between Spain and Morocco, reflects the strong commitment of both countries to promote investment, trade and bilateral strategic partnership.
He added that the Moroccan government has taken a number of measures to overcome the difficulties that confront businesses and the private sector in general, including judicial reform, tax reform, the establishment of a ministerial committee to deal with improving the business climate.
He also identified some key sectors likely to interest the investors of the two countries, namely agriculture, tourism, industry and renewable energy, which, he noted, offer significant potential for partnerships between the two countries.
The head of government called for the intensification of meetings between Moroccan and Spanish entrepreneurs and investors and strengthening the economic partnership between the two countries.
For his part, the Spanish Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, noted the development of economic relations with Morocco during the period 2002-2012, stressing that Morocco has become the second largest market for Spain, outside the EU and behind the United States, as well as the first destination of Spanish investments in Africa, with more than 700 Spanish companies present in different segments of the Moroccan economy.
Relations with Morocco are among the priorities of the Spanish government, he said, stressing the need to develop strategic cooperative relations between the two countries and to explore ways to promote bilateral trade.
Spain aims to develop its cooperation with Morocco in economic projects launched by King Mohammed VI, particularly in the areas of sanitation, infrastructure and renewable energy, said Mr. Rajoy, deeming that this meeting is likely to give fresh impetus to the strategic partnership between the two countries.
For her part, the President of the General Confederation of Enterprises of Morocco (CGEM), Miriem Bensalah Chaqroun, noted that the meeting illustrated the relationship of esteem and historical friendship between the two countries.
She recalled that the Moroccan exports to Spain reached, at the end of 2011, MAD 32 billion, textile (29 percent), cables (11 percent), shellfish (10 percent) – while Moroccan imports from Spain totaled, during the same period, MAD 39 billion, mainly dominated by various semi-finished products and electricity.
Despite the global economic crisis, Morocco continues its extensive program of change to adapt to an economy increasingly globalized, she said, noting that the Kingdom is keen to develop relations with its Mediterranean neighbors.
The agenda of the Morocco-Spain entrepreneurial meeting includes the examination of the strategies pursued by the two countries in the field of green economy, as well as exploring ways of investment and win-win partnership in all economic sectors.