The EU maintains its position of support for the UN-led peace process in Western Sahara.
Rabat – The European Union (EU) has denied rumors that it will ban Morocco from exporting products from the southern region of Western Sahara to European states.
The EU’s position on the labeling of Moroccan products has not changed, affirmed the EU’s spokesperson Peter Stano on Thursday, February 6, from Brussels, Belgium.
The union will apply the same standards to all imports into the European market from all countries and territories, including Morocco’s Western Sahara.
Western Sahara “is covered by the EU-Morocco agreement in the agricultural field that entered into force in July 2019,” said Stano at his daily press briefing.
“The EU’s position on labeling is determined by the relevant Council Regulation … on the fruit and vegetable sectors, which sets out the criteria to be met for the commercialization of these products,” added the spokesperson.
“The customs authorities of the member states are competent to ensure the implementation of the regulation,” he noted.
The EU’s stance on the Western Sahara conflict has not changed either, ensured Stano, noting that the EU “fully supports” the UN-led process.
The European official explained that the EU’s position on the issue “is determined by the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council.”
On January 29, Morocco’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Nasser Bourita held talks with the high representative of the EU for external affairs and security policy, Josep Borrell, in Brussels.
During the meeting, Borrell and Bourita discussed bilateral relations between Morocco and the EU.
Morocco is one of the largest-growing trade partners for European countries, revealed Borrell.
Trading partnerships between the two parties accounted for 54.4% of Moroccan trade in 2017, with about 64.6% of Moroccan exports going to the EU, and 56.5% of Moroccan imports coming from Europe.
Trade between the two parties reached €37.4 billion in 2017, revealed the European official.
“The EU’s imports from Morocco are dominated by machinery and transport equipment (€6 billion, 40.4), agricultural products (€3.4 billion, 23%), and textiles and clothing (€2.9 billion, 19.3%),” said a joint statement following the meeting.