Rabat - The Director of the District of Columbia’s Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment, Angie M. Gates, visited Morocco on December 5-13 to explore possible business opportunities with the Kingdom. Gates received a warm welcome from elected officials and business owners.
Rabat – The Director of the District of Columbia’s Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment, Angie M. Gates, visited Morocco on December 5-13 to explore possible business opportunities with the Kingdom. Gates received a warm welcome from elected officials and business owners.
Gates’s visit led her to four Moroccan cities, including Rabat, Marrakech, Casablanca and Tangier. The main purpose of the tour was to explore Morocco’s business potential, but also to strengthen cultural, economic, and educational ties between the District of Columbia and the Kingdom of Morocco.
The visit was also an opportunity to discuss possible avenues for cooperation between Washington D.C. and Moroccan stakeholders in the areas of arts and crafts, education, and youth engagement with a view to enhancing cross cultural exchange between the U.S. and Morocco.
“I am very pleased to be here in Morocco, a country we respect for its diverse cultural heritage, craftsmanship, social and economic development,” Gates told Morocco World News. “I am amazed by the potential both Morocco and the Moroccan people have including various fields. This visit was organized to explore the potential and strengthen the ties between our sister nations.”
Accompanied by Moroccan-American businessman Mohamed Hajjam, Gates’s nine-day visit first started in Marrakech where she met with high-level elected officials such as the Mayor of Marrakech, Mohamed Larbi Belcaid, to discuss business opportunities for the District of Columbia and for Morocco.
“This exploratory trip was her first trip to Africa, where she met a number of Moroccan officials, MPs, business leaders, and artists. She was very impressed by Morocco’s infrastructure, especially the Tangier Med Port, people’s hospitality, and Moroccan cultural diversity.”
For her, Hajjam explained, “It was just amazing how so many Moroccans can speak fluent English in addition to their mastery of Arabic and French. This is important because before coming to Morocco, Angie was afraid she would have trouble communicating with people.”
In Marrakech, Gates explored the possibility of a partnership between the internationally acclaimed Marrakesh Film Festival and the DC Film Festival. In this regard, she held meetings with a number of singers, songwriters and producers, including Dj Van, Douzi, Amir Ali, and Mohamed Zyat, to name but a few.
Potential business ventures, education collaboration, and cultural development opportunities may arise from this visit, according to Hajjam,
Laying the foundation for establishing a Sister City relationship between D.C. and the city of Rabat was also on the agenda. Discussions were held with local community and business leaders. Gates also visited the U.S Embassy in Morocco where she met with U.S. Ambassador Dwight L. Bush.
The American official expressed the willingness of the City Council of Washington D.C., to reinforce economic, cultural and artistic cooperation, which will be manifested through B2B ventures and partnerships with local stakeholders. To this end, she demonstrated her support for the week-long celebration of a “Morocco Days” event to take place in 2016 in Washington D.C.
Initiated by Mohamed Hajjam, “Morocco Days” will be a seven-day celebration of the kingdom’s heritage, where the country’s economic potential as a business hub in the African continent will be showcased.
“The aim of this upcoming event is to further strengthen the already strong ties between Morocco and the capital of the United States of America that go back to the founding fathers,” Hajjam told MWN.
“This metropolitan area [Washington D.C.] is home to more than 25,000 Moroccan residents who work, study and conduct business this city on a daily basis. Most importantly, this event can create business opportunities which will have an economic impact on Washington D.C. and Morocco,” Hajjam pointed out.
Gates was appointed Director of the Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment (OCTFME) on October 1, 2015. Before this, Gates was the Director of Operations for the Mayor of the District of Columbia, Muriel Bowser’s, Transition Team. The OCTFME is the go-to office for movie, television, photography, and multimedia productions in the D.C. area.
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