ISSN 2330-717X

Morocco, Spain See Eye To Eye On Regional, Bilateral Issues – OpEd


King Don Felipe VI and Queen Dona Letizia of Spain arrived on Wednesday afternoon in Rabat for an official visit to Morocco, at the invitation of King Mohammed VI.

The visit, King Felipe’s second to Morocco since he assumed power, celebrates the enduring partnership and dense relations existing between the two countries.  The Spanish king is accompanied by several top officials, including ministers of foreign affairs, interior, industry and fisheries.

Upon arrival at Rabat-Salé airport, the Spanish Sovereigns were welcomed by King Mohammed VI, who was accompanied by Crown Prince Moulay El Hassan, Prince Moulay Rachid and Princesses Lalla Khadija, Lalla Meryem, Lalla Asmae, Lalla Hasnaa and Lalla Oum Keltoum.

The royal procession then headed to the Royal Palace in Rabat where an official welcome ceremony was held in honor of the Spanish guests.Later, the two monarchs presided over  the signing ceremony of eleven cooperation agreements in several areas.

The agreements, which are meant to give new impetus to cooperation between the two countries, reflect the depth and quality of bilateral relations, as well as the willingness of the two Sovereigns, His Majesty King Mohammed VI and His Majesty King Felipe VI, to strengthen the multidimensional strategic partnership between the two neighboring and friendly countries.

The first agreement is a Memorandum of Understanding on the multidimensional strategic partnership between the Kingdom of Morocco and the Kingdom of Spain. It was signed by Nasser Bourita, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, and Josep Borrell Fontelles, Spanish minister of Foreign Affairs, the European Union and Cooperation.

The two ministers also signed the 2nd agreement, a protocol relating to the irrevocable donation of Tangier’s Gran Teatro Cervantes.

The third agreement is on cooperation in the fight against crime. It was signed by the interior ministers of the two countries, Abdelouafi Laftit and Fernando Grande-Marlaska Gomez.

The 4th agreement is a Memorandum of Understanding on the setting-up of a strategic partnership on energy. It was signed by Aziz Rebbah, minister of Energy, Mining and Sustainable Development, and José Dominguez Abascal, Spanish Secretary of State for Energy.

The two officials also signed the 5th agreement, which is a Memorandum of Understanding on the development of a third electric interconnection between the two countries.

The 6th agreement is a Memorandum of Understanding between the National Foundation of Morocco’s Museums and the Spanish Ministry of Culture and Sports for cooperation in museums. It was signed by Mehdi Qotbi, President of the National Foundation of Morocco’s Museums, and José Guirao Cabrera, Spanish minister of Culture and Sport.

The 7th agreement is a Memorandum of Understanding between the National Foundation of Museums and Reina Sofía National Art Museum (Spain), for the organization of an exhibition in Madrid. It was signed by Mehdi Qotbi and José Guirao Cabrera.

The 8th agreement is a Memorandum of Understanding between Morocco’s Royal Archives and the National Heritage of the Kingdom of Spain, for the organization at the Royal Palace in Madrid of an exhibition on the royal collections of the two countries. It was signed by Bahija Simou, Director of the Royal Archives and Alfredo Pérez de Arminan, president of the Board of Directors of Spain’s National Heritage.

The 9th agreement is an advanced memorandum of collaboration for the implementation of the facilitation of trade and passenger flows at the Strait of Gibraltar. It was signed by Fouad Brini, Chairman of the Board of Tanger Med Port Authority and Manuel Moron Ledro, President of the authority port of the Bay of Algeciras.

The 10th agreement is a Memorandum of Understanding between Morocco’s flag carrier Royal Air Maroc (RAM) and IBERIA Airlines. It was signed by Abdelhamid Addou, CEO of RAM, and Luis Gallego, CEO of IBERIA.

The eleventh agreement is a Memorandum of Understanding on assistance and mutual cooperation between the Moroccan Capital Market Authority (AMMC) and Spain’s National Securities Market Commission (CNMV). It was signed by Nezha Hayat, Chairperson of the AMMC and Sebastian Albella Amigo, Chairman of the CNMV.

The signing ceremony of these agreements took place in the presence of the Head of Government, the Speakers of the two Houses of Parliament, the Advisors of King Mohammed VI, members of the Government, as well as the official delegation accompanying King Felipe VI of Spain.

In the evening, King Mohammed VI hosted a dinner banquet in honor of his guests and their accompanying delegation, which includes several cabinet members.

The official visit will also be marked by the holding of a business forum.

The visit reflects the depth and quality of bilateral relations, and the shared desire to consolidate the multidimensional strategic partnership between the two neighboring and friendly countries, had stated the official statement announcing the Spanish king’s visit.

The Spanish royal visit to Morocco will be an opportunity to stress the deep-rooted relations between Morocco and Spain and keenness on developing them in all fields including economy, investment, energy and infrastructure.  It will highlight the importance of sustaining coordination over various issues on the regional and international levels to serve the interests of the two countries and global security and peace.

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Said Temsamani

Said Temsamani is a Moroccan political observer and consultant, who follows events in his country and across North Africa. He is a member of Washington Press Club.

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