Spanish FM emphasizes strong relations with Morocco

Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, José Manuel Albares, has emphasized the importance of maintaining strong relations with Morocco. Speaking on a news program on Spanish news channel 24 Horas, Albares highlighted the multidimensional interests that both countries share and emphasized the need to maintain “the best relations with Morocco” as a state policy for mutual benefit. This follows critical comments made by a Spanish cabinet member last week.

The Minister pointed out that Spain and Morocco share many challenges and that their ties extend beyond economic cooperation. The judicial and security cooperation between the two countries has been crucial in dismantling jihadist networks and fighting human trafficking mafias that threaten both countries. Albares also praised the contribution of the Moroccan community living in Spain to the economic and social development of Spain.

Spain’s relations with Morocco have been strengthened by the significant economic ties between the two countries. More than 6,000 Spanish companies export products worth 12 billion euros to Morocco, with 1,200 Spanish companies present in the country either directly or through their subsidiaries. The Minister emphasized that Spain’s relations with Morocco should be a state policy for mutual benefit, highlighting the depth of the ties that unite the two countries in all areas.

Albares also addressed the issue of migration and praised the positive results of the management of the migratory issue between Rabat and Madrid. He stated that in the first quarter of 2023, the arrivals of irregular immigrants in the Canary Islands decreased by 63%, while in Greece and Italy they increased by 95% and 300% respectively. The Minister pointed out that the new phase initiated a year ago between the two countries is based on “more solid principles.”

The position of the Spanish government towards Morocco is clear and unequivocal, according to Albares. This position is based on cooperation, mutual respect, non-interference in internal affairs, absence of unilateral acts, and responsibility. The Minister emphasized that Spain’s relationship with Morocco is based on a long history of shared interests and that it is important to maintain strong and positive relations between the two countries.