Home » Spanish FM: We Must Maintain ‘the Best Relations with Morocco’
Africa Business Diplomatic Economy Featured Morocco News North Africa

Spanish FM: We Must Maintain ‘the Best Relations with Morocco’

Rabat – Spain’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Jose Manuel Albares has once again reiterated his country’s commitment to cementing ties with Morocco, saying in a recent televised interview that Madrid must “maintain the best relations” with Rabat. 

Speaking on Spanish program 24 Horas on Wednesday, Albares recalled the two countries’ various fields of common interest, saying that “relations with Morocco must be a state policy for mutual benefit.”

He detailed some of the newer developments in Spanish-Moroccan ties, explaining that more than 6,000 Spanish companies export products to Morocco with a value of 12 billion euros.

Additionally, Albares explained, over 1,000 Spanish firms have started conducting business in the North African country, either directly or through subsites and branches.

Since the signing of the Joint Declaration of April 7 2022, economic and commercial ties between the two countries have witnessed a steady and considerable increase, reaching 20 billion euros of bilateral trade in 2023.

Albares also commented on other areas of cooperation, highlighting the security and judicial work that has enabled both countries to address terrorism and extremist threats, as well as human trafficking operations.

Migration control is another key common issue, with the top Spanish diplomat pointing out that the flow of irregular migrants to the Canary Islands decreased by 63% during the first quarter of 2023.

“The Spanish government’s stance towards Morocco is very clear and unambiguous,” Albares said. “It was expressed during the 7 April 2022 declaration, and the joint declaration that was released following the 12th High-Level Meeting.”

Spain’s chief diplomat elaborated that these ties are built on “cooperation, mutual respect, never meddling in internal affairs, and refraining from unilateral actions.”

Relations between Madrid and Rabat experienced a year-long diplomatic tension after Spain hosted the leader of the separatist Polisario Front in April 2021. 

But last year saw the European country reverse course and demonstrate its commitment to friendship with Morocco by formally supporting the country’s Autonomy Plan as the most viable route to a lasting political settlement in Western Sahara. Since then, the two neighbors have provided ample indication of their shared determination to continue making efforts toward sustaining this “ new era of transparency and reciprocity” in their relations.

Notably, Morocco recently joined a bid to host the 2030 World Cup with Spain, Portugal, and Ukraine, another development that has been praised by diplomats from both countries.

Source: moroccoworldnews