Morocco’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Nasser Bourita and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov exchanged messages of congratulations for the 60th anniversary of bilateral bonds between Morocco and Russia.
The messages pinpointed the “deep friendship,” “mutual respect,” and the “multidimensional and exemplary partnership” that links the two countries.
Morocco and Russia made first contact in 1778 when Morocco’s Sultan Mohammed III bin Abdullah and Empress Catherine II exchanged messages. The two countries then agreed to sign a peace treaty.
The Russian government wrote in October 2017 that the “historical ties strengthened after King Mohammed VI visited Moscow in 2002 and 2016.”
In their recent messages, the two ministers reiterated their commitment to jointly consolidate Moroccan-Russian relations within the framework of the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, signed in March 2016 under the chairman of King Mohammed VI and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin.
In 2017, Morocco and Russia signed 11 agreements to boost bilateral cooperation in several sectors, including energy, agriculture, culture, education, investment, and trade.
The agreement followed talks between Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani and his counterpart Dmitry Medvedev.
Both officials expressed determination to expand trade between the two countries. The volume of trade increased from approximately $200 million in 2001 to $2.5 billion in 2015.
The Russian government said in 2017 that Russia was Morocco’s 9th largest source of imports and Morocco’s 22nd highest exporting country in 2016.
“Economic cooperation between the two countries remains satisfactory, and trade continues to expand.
“However, we still need to do a lot to achieve a bigger trade balance between the two countries and further develop trade and these relations,” the government said.
In another publication, the Russian government wrote that Morocco was the “first Arab country to establish diplomatic relations with Russia.”