Morocco and Mercosur strengthen South-South Cooperation

Enaam Mayara, the Speaker of the House of Councillors, engaged in discussions on Friday in Rabat with Ruben Anibal Bacigalupe, the President of the Parliament of the Southern Common Market (Mercosur).

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Colorful spices at a traditional market in Marrakech, Morocco

The aim of the talks was to enhance cooperation between the two parliamentary institutions and bolster economic ties.

The meeting, attended by members of the Mercosur parliamentary bureau, provided an opportunity to discuss the implementation of the memorandum of understanding signed in November 2022 in Rabat.

Mercosur, also known as the Southern Common Market, is a regional integration organization in South America. The acronym stands for Mercado Común del Sur in Spanish and Mercado Comum do Sul in Portuguese. It was established in 1991 with the signing of the Treaty of Asunción by Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Other countries such as Venezuela and Bolivia joined later as associate members.

The main objectives of Mercosur are to promote economic integration, facilitate the free movement of goods, services, and factors of production, establish a common external tariff, and enhance cooperation among member states. The organization aims to create a large common market within South America, fostering economic growth and development in the region. The organization holds regular summits and meetings to discuss and coordinate policies on various topics, including trade, agriculture, energy, transportation, and environmental sustainability.

Morocco is France’s automotive production powerhouse and also houses a US aerospace manufacturing hub. Its geostrategic location makes it a gateway between Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. It has maintained political stability compared to many other countries in the region with a constitutional monarchy, a stable government, and a clear legal framework that supports business activities.

The kingdom has made significant investments in infrastructure development, including transportation networks, ports, airports, and energy facilities. Home to the fastest growing port in Africa, Morocco is a stone’s throw away from Europe, the country allows for preferential market access and trade agreements.

Morocco’s House of Councillors emphasized the importance of expediting joint efforts to execute the agreement, proposing the establishment of a parliamentary economic forum as a platform for dialogue and partnership between entrepreneurs from both sides.

The goal would be to create a free trade zone between Morocco and Mercosur. Mayara highlighted Morocco’s commitment to South-South cooperation in order to strengthen relations and foster collaboration across various domains.

Mayara also underscored the Moroccan Parliament’s active role as a dependable partner in various parliamentary groupings in Latin America and the Caribbean, and emphasized Morocco’s strategic position as a gateway to Africa for Mercosur countries.

The Moroccan Speaker of the House also stressed the need for enhanced cooperation between the two parties, particularly within the framework of the upcoming session of the Parliamentary Forum of Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean (AFROLAC) scheduled for October in Morocco, to serve the common interests of all parties involved.

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