Morocco’s Minister of Agriculture Aziz Akhannouch

EU-Morocco deal to liberalize trade

According to Morocco’s Minister of Agriculture, Aziz Akhannouch, that the negotiations between Morocco and the EU included talks on protecting “solidarity farming” to improve the income of small and medium farmers in rural areas.

Akhannouch said on Monday in Rabat that the negotiations had aimed to improve market access conditions for productive and competitive agriculture, “one of the pillars of national exports.”

In terms of exports, the parties agreed to liberalize trade restrictions on all but seven agriculture products, including tomatoes and clementines. Olive oil is one product that the deal will liberalize.

For imports, products will be divided into three categories. The first category is products that will be directly liberalized while the second category includes products that will be liberalized over a period of five years. The third category is for products that will be liberalized over a period of 10 years, including cotton, rice, and chocolate.

Akhannouch said that the agriculture agreement confirms the commitment of the EU to a “strategic, solid and balanced agreement” with Morocco. He also said that the vote that the agriculture agreement received in the EU Parliament ends the “maneuvers that have disrupted progress in the agreement.”

As reported on¸ the agreement received 444 votes in its favor on January 16. The deal extends the agriculture trade between Morocco and the EU.

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