The collaboration between Morocco and Spain has yielded very positive results, according to Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, Jose Manuel Albares.
In an interview published by various Spanish media outlets, Albares said that trade relations between the two countries were at historic high levels, with €20 billion of bilateral trade and €12 billion of Spanish exports to Morocco.
Turning point in diplomatic relations
Albares noted that the Joint Declaration signed on April 7, 2022, marked a turning point in Morocco-Spain relations, bringing an end to a two-year tension period between the two countries. He emphasized that the two countries had established a relationship based on mutual respect and benefit, with the absence of unilateral actions and respect for agreed commitments.
The top Spanish diplomat highlighted the significance of Morocco-Spain cooperation on security issues. He explained that organized crime, human trafficking, and illegal immigration have dropped by 69% on the Spanish coast and 82% in the Canary Islands between January 2022 and January 2023. Spain and Morocco have also dismantled six jihadist networks in recent months through their advanced security collaboration.
Advancing diplomatic ties
The Spain-Morocco High-Level Meeting (HLM), held on February 1 and 2 in Rabat, the first in eight years between the two countries, is proof of the shared commitment of the two countries to further advancing their already vastly improved and multifaceted diplomatic ties, according to Albares.
In terms of economic cooperation, the prospects for the development of investment promotion between the two countries are great, according to the Spanish minister. He noted that about 1,100 Spanish companies are currently operating in Morocco.
The relationship between Morocco and Spain has been historically complex, with the two countries sharing a long border and a history of cultural and economic ties. However, the past few years have been marked by tensions, particularly over the Western Sahara issue.
The Joint Declaration signed in 2022 helped to ease tensions and set the stage for improved relations between the two countries.
Spain and Morocco have a lot to gain from deepening their economic ties. Morocco is Spain’s second-largest trading partner outside the European Union, with trade between the two countries totaling €20 billion in 2021.
Spanish companies are also investing heavily in Morocco, with more than 1,000 Spanish companies currently operating in the country. There is great potential for further cooperation in areas such as renewable energy, tourism, and infrastructure.
The recent developments in Morocco-Spain relations are positive and bode well for the future. The Joint Declaration signed in 2022 has helped to set the stage for improved relations between the two countries, and the Spain-Morocco High-Level Meeting held earlier this year is proof of their shared commitment to further advancing their diplomatic ties. The significant progress made in economic and security cooperation is also promising and points to a bright future for the relationship between Morocco and Spain.