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NEWS

Press Release - Green light for Morocco trade negotiations
28.11.2012, 11:39 (CET)
An important step forward in the relations between the EU and Morocco was marked last week when the Trade Policy Committee of the Council, under the Cyprus Presidency, gave the green light for launching negotiations for a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) with the country. On Thursday, November 29, the Foreign Affairs Council dedicated to trade issues will assess progress towards launching free trade negotiations with Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia.

The support from the Committee follows the successful completion of a so called “scoping exercise” for Morocco, which was aimed at defining the scope and level of ambition of future free trade areas with the countries. The Trade Policy Committee is a high-level committee, which under the treaties is appointed by the Council, with the purpose of consulting the Commission in negotiating agreements with third countries or international organisations.

Enhancing relations after the “Arab spring”

The events of the "Arab spring" led the EU to put forward strategic responses, and the EU has given a strong political signal of its unwavering commitment to further enhancing trade and investment relations with the Southern Mediterranean partners engaged in political and economic reforms. The purpose of the negotiations is to build on the well-developed trade relationships under the Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreements and the European Neighbourhood Policy Action Plans and further improve market access and the investment climate, while also support economic reforms in the partner countries.

On December 14, 2011, the Council authorised the opening of negotiations and adopted negotiating directives for DCFTAs with Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia. It specified negotiations would only be launched after consultation of the Trade Policy Committee on the basis of a report from the Commission.

 

 

 

Presidency Spokesperson in Brussels
Nikos Christodoulides

Coreper II

Email: nchristodoulides@mfa.gov.cy
Telephone: +32 27395152
Mobile: +32 473400441