3rd Ministerial Meeting of the African Atlantic States Process: Press conference by MFA Nasser Bourita

You are here
  1. Home
Closing, on July 12, 2023 in Rabat, of the 3rd Ministerial Meeting of the African Atlantic States Process, with the participation of 21 countries from the Atlantic seaboard.

Speaking at a press briefing at the end of the 3rd Ministerial Meeting of the Atlantic African States Process, Mr. Bourita stressed that Morocco will decide on the future of cooperation with the European Union (EU) in the field of fisheries in the light of the government's own assessments and in consultation with European partners.

"The Morocco-EU fisheries Agreement is still in force. On the other hand, it's the fisheries Protocol, concluded for four years (2019-2023), which expires on July 17," said Mr. Bourita.

This is, the Minister added, a programmed expiry since the conclusion of the Protocol for a period of 4 years, starting on July 18, 2019.

Mr. Bourita described as satisfactory the implementation of the Protocol, noting that cooperation had been "positive and mutually beneficial" over the past four years.

He stressed that a meeting is scheduled for this week in Brussels between the Moroccan authorities and their European counterparts, within the framework of a joint Commission in the fisheries sector, to make a joint assessment of these four years.

With regard to the future of the fisheries Agreement, the Minister indicated that "the Moroccan government is currently considering" three parameters.

The first is doctrinal, he said, stressing that Morocco today, in line with the vision and foreign policy outlined by HM King Mohammed VI, favors partnerships "with a clearer added value".

"Morocco would like to see more advanced partnerships, where Moroccan added value is stronger", underlined Mr. Bourita.

Concerning the second parameter, the Minister explained that the Kingdom has developed a national fishing strategy "Halieutis" and put in place a vision dedicated to the development of the sector, which takes into account the expectations of operators and requires adaptations within the framework of interaction with partners.

The third parameter, which the government is integrating into its thinking and assessment, is linked to scientific data, with the aim of preserving this important natural resource for Morocco and Moroccans, and ensuring its sustainability, he added.

"Morocco will therefore interact with the European side on the basis of this reflection, which is underway," stressed Mr. Bourita, noting that dialogue and cooperation with European partners are ongoing.

The 3rd ministerial meeting of the Atlantic African States Process (AASP) is a further step in the construction of an area of stability, development and dialogue, he added.

This meeting takes place in application of the High Guidelines and vision of HM King Mohammed VI regarding the structuring of the South Atlantic, he said.

The Minister further noted that this meeting is a new milestone in the construction of the Atlantic-African space as an area of stability, development and dialogue.

In the same context, he recalled the two previous meetings, which were devoted to raising awareness of the priorities, opportunities and challenges, as well as the creation of this process' structures.

According to him, it was time to move on, within the framework of this 3rd meeting, to the definition of concrete initiatives in terms of the organization of ports and the fight against pollution, the blue economy and clean tourism.

In this context, Mr. Bourita reported that the meeting had reached an agreement on the Action Programme and the "Rabat Declaration", which emphasizes a number of points, including the fact that the implementation of this initiative is not a matter for diplomats, but requires the mobilization of the sectors and actors concerned, as well as associations, businessmen and other stakeholders, in each country.

"The sectors in each country must be aware that the Atlantic is an area full of opportunities and faces challenges that must be addressed," the Minister continued, noting that Morocco has proposed the holding of sectoral meetings to put the objectives of this program into practice.

Emphasizing the importance of the Atlantic African countries preparing to interact with the initiatives of other actors in the Atlantic space, Mr. Bourita noted that the importance of the Rabat process lies in the fact that the Atlantic countries "must speak with one voice and have their own references, action programs and priorities."

"Morocco has, ever since this initiative was launched, emphasized the importance of preparing and unifying views before entering into discussions with Latin America, North America and Atlantic Europe on how to structure action in the southern rim of the Atlantic, which is a strategic priority," he said.

The Minister also stressed the importance of this region, which offers a number of development opportunities in the fields of tourism, ports and urban planning, and which includes major countries on the African continent such as Morocco, Angola, South Africa, Côte d'Ivoire, Senegal and Nigeria, assuring that the aim of this process is to enable these African countries to benefit from the opportunities and face the challenges of the region.

Twitter Notifications Facebook Language selector Search icon Menu icon Message icon Closing icon YouTube icon Scroll icon Arrow down Map of Morocco icon Map of Africa icon Map of Europe icon world's map icon Navigation Arrow Eye icon Sharing icon Point icon Play icon Pause icon News actuality icon Extend icon Print icon Social network share icon Calendar icon Whatsapp icon Journalist icon Radio icono Television icon Quote icon Location icon world's map icon Pin icon Previous icon Next icon PDF icon Icon to increase the text Icon to decrease the text Google plus icon Decree icon Organigram icon Icon left arrow Instagram Linkedin icon