This high-level meeting represents the shared desire of Moroccan and European economic actors to support political actors in developing Morocco’s relationship with the EU and to discuss ways to make the economic and trade partnership even stronger, more resilient and fruitful . value and growth.
On this occasion, the Executive Vice-President of the European Commission, Valdis Dombrovskis, emphasized that this first business dialogue between Morocco and the EU is “an important step”, noting that the EU and Morocco “today have a strong and well-established trade and economic tyres”.
“Total bilateral trade in goods was over €43 billion in 2021, the highest level ever, and we have stable trade in services. However, we can do much more, in particular to support the green and digital transition of our economies,” he said.
In this regard, he said that “EU companies and investors recognize Morocco’s potential”, noting that they are eager to strengthen their relations, supported by solid legal and commercial frameworks.
“From an EU perspective, we are ready to discuss how to modernize the free trade area, focusing specifically on how to facilitate complementary and more sustainable foreign direct investment,” he says.
For his part, the Minister of Industry and Trade, Ryad Mezzour, indicated that the Morocco-EU Business Dialogue is an opportunity to further strengthen the important commercial relations between the two sides and to highlight Morocco’s impressive evolution over the past 20 years. to bring to light.
And to recall that Morocco has taken “exceptional steps” and introduced “strong” sectoral strategies that are beginning to bear fruit, confirming the positioning of Morocco, which is today able to meet all the challenges of the era to go. on local but also European and African strategic issues.
Morocco therefore represents a safe and reliable partner and an attractive investment country for Europe and for all partners around the world who are strongly interested in the riches of the Kingdom, the minister underlined. The President of the CGEM, Chakib Alj, for his part, insisted on the need to modernize the Association Agreement between Morocco and the EU, which dates back to 2000, so that it can take into account Morocco’s progress and the new economic reality , especially those created by the Covid-19 pandemic and tensions in Eastern Europe.
He also underlined the pivotal role that the Moroccan and European private sector can play in strengthening the partnership between Morocco and the EU and continuing to build a shared, strong and resilient neighbourhood.
Mr AlJ then focused on the strategic priorities of Moroccan and European business leaders, namely better access to markets, the green transition, the resilience of value chains and Euro-African development, before emphasizing the urgency of concerted action.
At this meeting, the discussions highlighted a number of challenges faced by market participants in the context of investment and trade between Morocco and the EU.
The private sector has clearly expressed a desire not only to protect but also to update trade relations between Morocco and the EU. The discussions also focused on the opportunities to be exploited, in particular in the areas of innovation, digital technology and sustainability.
Last September, the CGEM and BusinessEurope had adopted a modernization pact for trade and investment between Morocco and the European Union, based on 8 pillars.
These are investment, the agreement on the reduction of non-tariff barriers for industrial products including an agreement on mutual recognition of regulations and standards, services and transport, professional qualifications, customs matters, SMEs, the business climate and food security.