Rabat – Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccans Abroad, Mr Nasser Bourita, met, on Thursday October 28, 2021, in Rabat, with the Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia, Mrs Marta Lucia Ramirez, currently on official visit to Morocco.
At a joint press briefing after the meeting, Bourita stressed that Morocco and Colombia have “very good” relations, whose 40th anniversary celebration took place two years ago.
This meeting was an opportunity to reaffirm the “remarkable” evolution of bilateral relations in all areas, in accordance with the vision of HM King Mohammed VI and the President of Colombia, Iván Duque Márquez, added the Minister, affirming that the two countries share the same visions, perceptions and priorities on many issues.
“We discussed several bilateral and regional issues and noted a convergence of views at several levels,” said Bourita, adding that both sides have reaffirmed their common desire to raise these relations to a higher level.
The talks, he said, also allowed to reiterate the joint commitment to continue strengthening political, trade, energy, economic and cultural relations, through seizing the opportunities offered on both sides to boost trade and taking advantage of the complementarity and the various potentials of the two countries, especially in renewable energy, trade, infrastructure and tourism.
He also underlined that in terms of economic and trade relations, Morocco and Colombia are committed to adopting new mechanisms to expand the range of trade and explore investment opportunities, through the establishment of productive platforms that can facilitate access to markets in their respective regions.
Bourita also said that the two countries have agreed to share their experiences and best practices related to the solidarity economy, particularly in rural areas, to support initiatives led by women.
“Morocco has forged an experience in this field and it is the same for Colombia … It is, in fact, a question of designing harmony and synergy between these experiences in order to develop joint projects in this area,” said the minister.
In cultural matters, added Bourita, Morocco and Colombia are determined to intensify their exchanges, especially since the two countries share a common “Spanish heritage” that can provide a platform for joint action, among others.
He also said that the visit of Ramirez to Morocco, her first travel to Africa, stems from the vision that the Kingdom is the country “just right to establish itself as a gateway to Colombia on the Continent”.
Agreeing in the same sense, Ramirez highlighted the unique links between Rabat and Bogota, stressing that Morocco, through these ties, can stand out as a gateway to Africa as Colombia in Latin America.
“We discussed several topics and reviewed a series of sectors in which cooperation must be consolidated, such as industry, infrastructure and agriculture, an area where both countries have an important vision,” she added.
In the agricultural sector, Morocco and Colombia have decided to launch, very soon, two integrated programs in the field of agriculture (irrigation systems, soil mapping, fertilizers, etc.) in two Colombian regions to be identified in the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, announced the Vice President.
“It is also important to develop our cooperation in renewable energy because Morocco has experienced a very important development in this area,” she said. In this regard, she “congratulated” the Kingdom for the Vision of HM the King who “has made of it an important country and one of the champions in the international energy agenda”.
Ramirez also said she stressed, during her talks with Bourita, the importance of promoting cultural and educational cooperation and expand it to various sectors of common interest, with the support of academic activities and exchanges between academic institutions of both countries.
Similarly, she welcomed her “fruitful” visit to Morocco which, she noted, will give a new dynamic to the axis Rabat-Bogota to continue to consolidate the fruitful multidimensional association that exists between the two countries, both bilaterally and multilaterally and as part of South-South cooperation.
According to the joint statement issued at the end of their talks, Ramirez informed Bourita “of the instructions given to the new ambassador of Colombia in Rabat, to extend the consular jurisdiction of the Embassy of Colombia in the Kingdom of Morocco on the entire Moroccan territory, including the Sahara”.
Also, Bourita informed the Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia of the latest developments related to the autonomy initiative for the Sahara region, presented by Morocco in 2007.
Ramirez stressed, as recognized in various resolutions of the UN Security Council, “the serious efforts made by the Kingdom of Morocco in the search for a pragmatic, realistic and lasting political solution to this dispute, within the framework of the political process conducted under the exclusive auspices of the UN”.