(Article in French)
La Nouvelle T (June 5, 2013) — European Union Ambassador in Morocco, Rupert Joy, announced that Morocco and the European Union have decided to set up a Thorough and Comprehensive Free-Trade Agreement (ALECA), in order to achieve a deeper economic integration between the two parties.
During a gathering in Casablanca organized by the Union of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry in Morocco, the Ambassador explained that the EU has been Morocco’s most important partner and number one investor since their signing of their first commercial agreement in 1969. Joy noted that bilateral commerce between the two parties has more than doubled during the last decade, thanks to the setup of many agreements: the free-trade zone for industrial products, the agricultural agreement, the agreement over dispute resolution, as well as the launch of negotiations over a fishing agreement.
Slim Kchouk, President of the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Morocco, said that the beginning of negotiations over the ALECA is a major step in deepening the economic ties between the EU and Morocco, pointing out that EuroCham Morocco is able to contribute to the promotion of commercial exchanges between European and Moroccan business by working with the European Union Delegation in Morocco.
Benefits of the ALECA go way beyond the development of commercial exchanges and the suppression of custom duties between the two parties, according to Marta Moya-Diaz, Head of the Trade Section at the European Union Delegation in Morocco. According to Moya-Diaz, this agreement will reduce non-tariff barriers, liberalize trade in services, offer a protection for investments, and harmonize regulations in the domains of public markets, normalization, sanitary measures, intellectual rights, as well as competition and public subventions.
Participants at the meeting pointed out that the direct beneficiaries of this agreement will be businesses, which will benefit from a more dynamic and competitive atmosphere, since ALECA will facilitate the access to markets on both sides, as well as a more predictable and stable business environment.