This high -level meeting is an opportunity to support political actors in the development of Morocco-EU relations and discuss ways to do the economic and trade partnerships more strong, suot at carrier of much added value and growth.
In his opening speech at this meeting, Valdis Dombrovskis stressed that “the first EU-Morocco trade dialogue is an important step”. “The EU and Morocco now have strong and stable commercial and economic ties: the total bilateral trade in goods will reach more than 43 billion euros in 2021, the highest level ever, and we have a stable exchange of services. However, we still have a lot to do, especially in support the green and digital transition of our economies“, he pointed out.
“EU businesses and investors recognize potential of Morocco. They are eager to strengthen their relationship, which is underpinned by strong legal and business frameworks. ang Business Dialogue now will facilitate this important discussion. From the perspective of the EU, we are ready to discuss how modernize the free trade zonespecifically focused on how we can do that facilitate additional and more sustainable foreign direct investment.“, added the executive vice-president of the European Commission.
For his part, CGEM president Chakib Alj insisted that “mmodernize the Morocco-EU Association Agreementdating from 2000so that it can take into account the development of Morocco, the new economic realities, especially those generated by the Covid-19 pandemic and by tensions in Eastern Europe such as rising prices of raw materials and freight “.
He also stressed the central role that the Moroccan and European private sectors can play in strengthening the Morocco-EU partnership and continuing to build a strong and resilient cohesive neighborhood.
Mr. Alj then focused on the strategic priorities of Moroccan and European business leaders, such as a better access to marketsang green transitionang stability of value chains and the euro-african developmentbefore asserting the urgency of joint action.
Pierre Gattaz, for his part, stressed the “need to adapt the association agreement between the EU and Morocco to the commercial realities of 21st century and business needs in important areas such asdigital economy. In the current context of growing geopolitical risks, it is important for Europe to diversify its markets and Morocco is a natural partner ”.
Furthermore, the Minister of Industry and Trade, Ryad Mezzour, declared: “the Europe-Morocco business dialogue is an opportunity to further strengthen the commercial relations that are extremely important between the two countries. Now is also an opportunity for to Morocco to show its evolution which has been phenomenal over the past twenty years.Morcoco has taken extraordinary steps thanks to the vision of His Majesty the King, may God help him first and the stability that is ensured, in strategic visions, with enormous sacrifices made to build class infrastructure up to a stable sector.visions and strategies that are beginning to bear fruit and have demonstrated and demonstrated that Morocco’s positioning today is capable of meeting all the challenges of the current weather and respond to all crises and respond to Moroccan but also to strategic challenges in Europe and Africa. »
“Now Morocco is a reliable, safe partner, a attractive investment land for Europe, but not only, for all partners around the world who are highly interested in Morocco, we have exposed this situation to our partners in Europe by inviting them to accelerate their investments in us because if they won’t, others do. “, continued the minister.
The Morocco-EU business dialogue is marked by a panel discussion with the participation of Badr Alioua, president of the International Commission of CGEM, of Abir Lemseffer, chief coordinator of CGEM’s relations with European institutions and deputy general manager of Azura, of Hakim Marrakech, general manager of Maghreb Industrie, Mia Lahlou Giancarli, Managing Director of Pharma 5, Edwin Sluismans, Vice President of EuroCham Morocco, Khalodoun Bouacida, Managing Director and Head of the North and West Africa Region of BASF Morocco and Bassim Bennani, Nokia’s Chief Marketing Officer for North and West Africa.
The exchanges made it possible to determine a a number of challenges encounters economic operators in the context of investment and trade between Morocco and the EU. The private sector has clearly expressed their desire not only to protect Morocco-EU trade relations but also to update it. Discussions were also focused opportunity to seizeespecially in terms innovation, digital and sustainability.
As a reminder, adopted by CGEM and BusinessEurope, at last septembera Trade and Investment Modernization Pact between Morocco and the European Union which depends on 8 columns: akoinvestmentakoagreement on the reduction of non-tariff barriers for industrial products including an agreement on mutual recognition of regulations and standardsang services and transportationang Professional Qualificationsang custom is importantang SME, ang climate business and the Food Safety.