Wednesday 6 February 2019

1st Session of Africa Working Group of Morocco-U.S. Strategic Dialogue Held in Washington DC

Vocal synthesis
1st Session of Africa Working Group of Morocco-U.S. Strategic Dialogue Held in Washington DC

Following the decision taken last September by minister of foreign affairs and international cooperation, Nasser Bourita, and US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo to relaunch the Morocco-U.S. Strategic Dialogue, the first session of the Africa working group related to the said Dialogue was held Tuesday in Washington, D.C.

This meeting, which was marked by the participation of a large Moroccan delegation led by Mohcine Jazouli, minister delegate for African cooperation, reflects the shared will of the two countries to give an African dimension to their strategic partnership.

Speaking on this occasion, Jazouli said that "Africa is at the top of Morocco's foreign policy priorities as evidenced by the return of the Kingdom to the African Union in January 2017", noting that "today, more than 100 Moroccan companies operate in no less than 42 African countries, with an investment of 4 billion dollars over a period of 15 years."

These investments, he said, have been made in several areas, including real estate, fertilizers, banking, insurance, telecommunications, as well as the agro-industrial and pharmaceutical sectors.
This African dimension of the Kingdom "is strongly rooted in a deep conviction that the socio-economic development of African countries and the creation of jobs will help address the challenges posed by extremism, radicalism, terrorism, illegal immigration and political instability", he pointed out.

Thanks to a multifaceted vision of cooperation with the continent, "the Kingdom of Morocco has demonstrated the full extent of its leadership in terms of security issues on the basis of relevant and efficient strategies to fight terrorism while consolidating cooperation in this area with the United Nations, the United States and several other allied countries," Jazouli added.

In order to fight religious extremism, he said, Morocco plays, under the leadership of HM King Mohammed VI, Commander of the Faithful, an "extremely important" role in promoting a tolerant Islam, recalling that the spiritual, historical and cultural links binding the Kingdom and the rest of Africa are very strong thanks to the main Sufi branch of Islam, the Tariqa Tidjanya, particularly in West Africa.

Jazouli also noted the convergence of the US African policy with the Kingdom's priorities in the continent, in that both countries work to promote trade and investment, fight terrorism and work towards a better targeting of financial aid for Africa.

"Morocco stands out as one of the best partners to develop cooperation with the United States to increase its footprint across the continent at all levels and advance our common interests", he said.

The US delegation to this meeting was led by assistant secretary of state for African Affairs, Tibor Nagy.

MAP 06 February 2019