By Said Temsamani
By Said Temsamani
Morocco World News
Washington, February 16, 2013
The 13th ordinary session of the Assembly of Heads of States and Governments of the Community of Sahel-Saharan States will take place in Morocco.
This decision was taken at the extraordinary session of the Conference of Heads of States and Governments, held Saturday in N’Djamena, Chad, with the participation of Morocco, that was represented by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation , Saad Eddine El Otmani.
The Conference welcomed Morocco’s invitation to host its 13th ordinary session. It asked the Secretariat to agree on dates in consultation with the Moroccan authorities.
Morocco is honored to have been chosen to host the next ordinary summit, said Mr. El Otmani on this occasion, noting that the invitation was made following the royal instructions. In fact, King Mohammed VI has always showed his keenness to give a new and dynamic impetus to CEN-SAD organization.
Morocco is determined to fully play its role in the CEN-SAD and coordinate efforts with African countries to meet the political, security and socio-economic challenges facing the Sahel and the Sahara.
In this regard, the minister stressed that the N’Djamena Summit marks a new beginning for the community of Sahel-Saharan States to adopt and sign the new Treaty Organization, in addition to the adoption of all texts including the rules of procedure of the Conference of Heads of States and Governments, and those of the Executive Council and the Financial Regulation.
“Today we are witnessing a revival of CEN-SAD and a new dynamic that will be beneficial to all countries in this space,” he noted.
Morocco is keen to work with African organizations as well as reviving the Arab Maghreb Union (AMU).
Despite its withdrawal from the OAU (present day African Union), Morocco has paradoxically strengthened its ties with the African continent with a focus on partnership and economic union.
The aims of CEN-SAD are very similar to those of the AMU in encouraging socio economic development in agriculture, industry, energy, social, culture, health, creating a free trade area and the promotion of external trade through an investment policy in member States. It also seeks the harmonization of educational, scientific and cultural systems.
Morocco has always sought to develop economic and social development with its African partners. It is for this reason that it is actively seeking involvement with the CEN-SAD, whose statutes call for “the establishment of an economic union based on a comprehensive strategy through a development plan with additional national plans development of the countries concerned.”
The same motivation guides its policy to pursue the development of the Maghreb and to enhance business and trading links between its member states.
Whether CEN- SAD can be revived during a period of instability in the Sahel has yet to be seen, but Morocco has had the vision to assist in the reorientation of a regional organization, which has an important potential for the consolidation of economic development and business relationships across the African Continent.
Established in April 1998 in Tripoli, in the context of an economic union in the sub-region, the community of Sahel-Saharan States includes 28 states.
Member States: Benin, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Comoros, Côte d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Guinea, Kenya, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Morocco, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Chad, Togo and Tunisia.