UK Hopes to Make Morocco ‘Gateway’ to Africa

Mohcine Jazouli giving a speech at the Morocco-UK Business Dialogue in London. Photo credit: Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs / Twitter

Rabat – The UK intends to make Morocco “a hub and a gateway to Africa” after the Brexit, said Morocco’s Minister Delegate for Foreign Affairs, Mohcine Jazouli.

Morocco and the UK are “writing a new page in the history” of their economic relations, the Moroccan official stressed on Tuesday, January 21, in London.

With the UK leaving the European Union at the end of January, the country wants to make Morocco a hub, a pivotal country, and a gateway to Africa in order to strengthen its African investments and exports to the continent, added Jazouli.

Morocco has already signed a partnership agreement with the UK, ensuring the continuity of bilateral economic relations between the two countries after Brexit, recalled the minister.

The diplomat also emphasized the need to increase business volume between the two kingdoms, especially in terms of trade and investments.

Annual trade between Morocco and the UK reached more about MAD 18.3 billion (around €1.7 billion) in 2018. The value of Moroccan exports to Britain currently stands at MAD 8 billion (about €751 million), revealed Jazouli.

The numbers make the UK Morocco’s seventh-largest destination for exports and the 11th-largest source of imports.

Referring to the potential areas of investment, the Moroccan diplomat said there are positive ongoing operations in the financial sector.

A Moroccan bank has bought shares in an English bank in Africa. There is also a British fund investing in a Moroccan bank to develop in Africa, revealed the minister, without sharing the names of the banks.

The sector of renewable energies is also drawing the interest of the British economic community because of Morocco’s successful experiences and projects in the field, noted Jazouli.

The Moroccan minister made the statement at a press conference following the Morocco-UK Business Dialogue. The meeting, held for the first time this year, brought together Moroccan and British diplomats and businessmen.

The event was jointly organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the General Confederation of Moroccan Enterprises (CGEM) on the sidelines of the Africa-UK Investment Summit.

The summit aimed to restructure the British foreign policy and allow the UK to build new alliances in trade and diplomacy ahead of its exit from the EU.