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Sunday, May 26, 2024

Rabat, Lisbon Reaffirm Strategic Interest of Morocco-EU Privileged Partnership

 Morocco and Portugal reaffirmed the strategic interest of the privileged partnership between the Kingdom and the European Union, considered as a pillar of stability in the Mediterranean.

In the joint statement issued at the end of the 14th Morocco-Portugal High Level Meeting, held Friday in Lisbon, Portugal reiterated its ”commitment to a greater development of the EU-Morocco privileged partnership, which is already the deepest and most comprehensive in the framework of the southern neighborhood’.”

“The two parties emphasize that strengthening the resilience of the Multidimensional Partnership between Morocco and the EU is a top priority,” notes the Joint Statement adopted at this meeting co-chaired by the Head of Government Aziz Akhannouch and the Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa.

In this sense, “the Kingdom of Morocco welcomes Portugal’s commitment, which reflects a deep attachment to the development of a harmonious partnership between Morocco and the European Union to serve their common interests.”

In this regard, the two countries commended the implementation of various agreements and the development of new types of partnerships, such as the green partnership between the EU and Morocco.

“The two parties stress the relevance of discussing at the highest level during the Euro-Mediterranean Summit, scheduled for the second half of the year, strategic issues of the EU-Southern Neighborhood relationship, such as energy and green transition, digital, environment and climate change, food and energy security, socio-economic development and investment, as well as migration and mobility,” explained the Joint Statement.

Building on the achievements of the Morocco-EU Green Partnership signed on October 18, 2022, the parties note, in particular, the importance of cooperation in the field of green energy, taking into account the goals of decarbonization of their economies as well as the protection of their natural resources, innovation, financing, research and development, education and training.

Given the importance of the EU’s relations with its Southern Neighborhood, especially in the current geopolitical context at regional level, as well as the common challenges facing the Mediterranean region, Portugal and Morocco underline their commitment to the proper implementation of the New Mediterranean Agenda.

In this context, both countries stressed the importance of the implementation of the Economic and Investment Plan associated with the New Agenda for the Mediterranean for socio-economic development and greater economic integration at regional level.

In the framework of Euro-Mediterranean relations, Rabat and Lisbon call for a strengthening of the role and capacities of the Union for the Mediterranean, as a privileged forum for regional dialogue and cooperation that includes all the countries of the region, in compliance with all the principles that govern this partnership.

In addition, both countries emphasize the added value of the 5+5 Dialogue, in its various sectoral components, as a limited and pragmatic mechanism for cooperation between the northern and southern shores of the Mediterranean Sea.

Taking into account the very special importance that both countries attach to the African continent, Rabat and Lisbon are committed to combining efforts to contribute actively to the prevention and peaceful resolution of conflicts in Africa and stressed the importance of promoting mutually beneficial tripartite cooperation with African partners by giving priority to actions with high socio-economic added value.

The two countries also reiterated their concern about the deterioration of the security and humanitarian situation in the Sahel region and the risk of extension of the terrorist threat to other countries in West Africa.

Aware of the security consequences of the destabilization of the Sahel for Africa and the Euro-Atlantic area, Portugal and Morocco reaffirm their support for regional and multilateral efforts to stabilize and develop the region.

Morocco and Portugal expressed “their great concern about the alarming increase of the terrorist threat in Africa, exacerbated by the proliferation of non-state armed actors, including separatist groups that generate destabilization and increased vulnerability of African states.”

Regarding the situation in Libya, Portugal and Morocco agree that the United Nations and the international community must continue their diplomatic efforts to find a political compromise between the conflicting parties on the basis of the Skhirat Agreement and under the aegis of the United Nations.

Portugal hails, in this regard, the constructive role and the credible efforts made by Morocco to resolve this issue.

With regard to the Middle East Peace Process, both countries reaffirmed their willingness to contribute to establishing a comprehensive, just and lasting peace, on the basis of the existing Agreements and Arrangements, as well as the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. They reiterated their commitment to a two-state solution, coexisting peacefully, as well as their common call to maintain the status quo of the Holy Places of Jerusalem, as a flagship city of religious coexistence and tolerance.

Stressing the importance of their cooperation at the multilateral level, Portugal and Morocco will ensure the strengthening of their cooperation within the United Nations as well as within the specialized bodies of which both countries are members, in particular through a strengthened dialogue between the two Departments of Foreign Affairs, with a view to integrating a multilateral dimension in their bilateral dialogue.


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