The European Union (EU) attaches “strategic interest” to fisheries cooperation with Morocco, said Mohammed Zakaria Aboudahab, professor of international relations at Mohammed V University in Rabat.
The “positive” signs issued by the EU and Morocco through the joint press release published at the end of the 5th session of the Joint Commission responsible for monitoring the Fisheries Agreement, held Thursday in Brussels, provide information on a future favorable to the strengthening of cooperation in the field of fisheries, taking into account the strategic interests of the Kingdom, explained Aboudahab.
He noted that the Brussels meeting was an opportunity to clarify that the Morocco-EU Fisheries Agreement is still in force and that it is the Fisheries Protocol, concluded for four years (2019-2023), which is coming soon. expires (July 17).
“This protocol should be reviewed in the light of Morocco’s wishes,” said the international relations expert, adding that this new approach “should encourage stakeholders to reflect on new operational modalities to take into account the new parameters required by the kingdom “.
Aboudahab pointed out that this is a “crucial” step in the Morocco-EU partnership in the fisheries sector which demonstrates the Kingdom’s “negotiating strength”.
He recalled, in this regard, that the Declaration of Rabat II, adopted at the end of the 3rd Ministerial Meeting of the Atlantic African States Process held on Wednesday, emphasizes, among other things, the blue economy, specifying that “Morocco is now considering the fisheries sector within the framework of a continental, even intercontinental vision, which takes into account the dimension of the blue economy”.
Aboudahab also highlighted the relevance of the three parameters put forward by the Kingdom in the context of the ongoing in-depth reflection on the future of the Fisheries Agreement.
The first aspect relates to a revision of the doctrine on which the agreement was based until now, the second which “is extremely important on the strategic plan for Morocco”, relates to the added value of this agreement for the Kingdom , while the third concerns the scientific aspects of this partnership framework to preserve the sustainability of the resource, he observed.
“We are therefore faced with a new configuration and in a new historical sequence,” he concluded.