EU-Morocco: Agricultural agreement sign of credibility

The European Commission today welcomed Thursday’s vote of the European Parliament approving the Agricultural agreement with Morocco, with Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development Dacian Cioloș, Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle and High Representative for Foreign Affairs President Catherine Ashton all expressing their satisfaction.
"This is an important agreement, not only in economic terms, but also in political terms,” Commissioner Cioloș said. “It is a balanced agreement which opens new opportunities for our producers in Europe. It paves the way for a real reinforcement of our relations with Morocco, including with the opening of negotiations for a future bilateral agreement of geographical indications which we are now ready to discuss.”
This agreement is particularly important in the context of the changes in our Southern Neighbourhood since it will support increased trade and create job opportunities,” Commissioner Füle said after the MEPs approved the EU-Morocco Agreement on the liberalization of trade in agricultural products, fish and fishery products during the plenary session in Strasbourg by 369 votes.
“The approved agreement is fully in line with our new approach and sends a strong message to Morocco and to other Southern Neighbours about our determination to advance our relationship in a practical way that will have a strong positive impact on citizens both in Morocco and the EU, Commissioner Füle added.
Today's vote also boosts the credibility of our efforts to establish a close partnership with our neighbours, including in particular the principles of mutual accountability and ‘more for more’,” Füle said.
Catherine Ashton on her part said after the vote: Today the EU has demonstrated that it is ready to deepen its relationship with Morocco in tangible and practical ways. This Agreement will be good for trade and good for jobs. It will benefit the citizens of both the European Union and Morocco. The vote also sends a strong message to our partners in the Southern Neighbourhood that we are serious in our promises to respond to their reform efforts. I trust that this is only the beginning of a new phase in EU-Moroccan relations.”
A press release said the entry into force of the Agricultural agreement would give substance to the Advanced Status concluded with Morocco in 2008. It will create investment opportunities for EU companies and help to provide jobs in Morocco, therefore reducing the temptation to find better living opportunities abroad.
In the light of current events in the Southern Mediterranean, the European Commission finds it important that the Agreement with Morocco on the further liberalisation of agricultural, processed agricultural and fishery products enters into force as soon as possible, the press release concluded. (ENPI Info Centre)
Read more
Press release
ENPI Info Centre – Green light for EU-Morocco trade deal (16-02-12)
EP press release and links to relevant documents
ENPI Info Centre – Commissioner welcomes EP vote allowing Morocco to take part in EU programmes
ENPI Info Centre webpage - Morocco
EU Delegation – Morocco
EU Delegation to Morocco on Facebook and Twitter

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