Morocco will decide on the future of the fisheries agreement with the EU following an assessment by the government – “The Morocco-EU Fisheries Agreement is still in force. On the other hand, it is the Fishing Protocol, concluded for four years (2019-2023), which expires on 17 July”, explained Bourita, speaking at a press briefing at the end of the 3rd Ministerial Meeting of the Atlantic African States Process.
The Minister added that this was a “programmed” expiry date since the Protocol was concluded for a period of 4 years, starting on 18 July 2019.
Bourita described the implementation of the Protocol as “satisfactory”, noting that cooperation had been “positive and mutually beneficial” over these four years.
He added that a meeting is scheduled for this week in Brussels between the Moroccan authorities and their European counterparts, as part of a Joint Committee on Fisheries, to make a joint assessment of these four years.
With regard to the future of the Fisheries Agreement, the Minister indicated that “the Moroccan government is currently considering” three parameters.
The first is “doctrinal”, he said, believing that Morocco today, in line with the vision and foreign policy outlined by HM King Mohammed VI, favours partnerships “with clearer added value”.
“Morocco wants more advanced partnerships, where Moroccan added value is stronger”, Bourita maintained.
With regard to the second parameter, the Minister explained that the Kingdom has developed a national fisheries strategy “Halieutis” and put in place a vision dedicated to the development of the sector, which takes into account the expectations of operators and requires adaptations as part of the interaction with partners.
The third parameter, which the government is incorporating into its thinking and assessment, is linked to scientific data, the aim being to preserve this important natural resource for Morocco and Moroccans, and to ensure its sustainability, he added.
“Morocco will therefore interact with the European side on the basis of this reflection, which is underway”, Bourita stressed, indicating that dialogue and cooperation with European partners are ongoing.
Morocco will decide on the future of the fisheries agreement with the EU following an assessment by the government