The Kingdom of Morocco and the EU have launched a joint political declaration of their intention to establish a “Green Partnership” initiative.
The declaration was announced at a high level event bringing together Mr. Nasser Bourita, Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccans residing abroad, Mr. Mohamed Benchaâboun, Minister of the Economy, Finance and Administrative Reform, Mr. Aziz Rabbah, Minister of Energy, Mines and the Environment and Mr. Frans Timmermans, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission, Mr. Olivér Varhélyi, European Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighborhood Policy and Mr. Virginijus Sinkevičius, European Commissioner for the Environment, Oceans and Fisheries.
At the high-level event, Morocco also presented the substantial and ambitious revision of its NDC to reach a 45.5% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.
Once finalised, the Green Partnership will contribute to Morocco achieving its objectives, both in decarbonising the economy and in strengthening the resilience of sectors most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.
The collaboration on this Green Partnership will reflect a strong political convergence between the two parties with regard to issues related to the environment, climate and sustainable development.
“The Morocco-EU Green Partnership is a true Partnership for the future. It will encourage the neighbourhood and the African continent to cooperate fully and more intensely than ever, to strengthen climate action. The Green Partnership will open a new path for the Morocco-EU relationship, by structuring an innovative framework for action, in fields of the future and with high potential.”Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita.
Commenting on this key milestone, Executive Vice President for the European Green Deal Frans Timmermans, said: “The EU has set high climate ambitions with the Green Deal and we will soon present the legislative proposals to accelerate our emissions reductions. But the climate and biodiversity crises are global crises, and we can only succeed if we work closely together with our partners.”
“We aim to bring all countries on board a global race to zero. With its new, more ambitious climate target for 2030, Morocco is already demonstrating a strong commitment to climate action. We will work now together towards a Green Partnership, to share best practices and develop joint projects in circular economy, green finance, and clean energy.”Frans Timmermans
Together Morocco and the EU will strengthen their cooperation in the fight against climate change, and work towards advancing their energy transition, protecting the environment and boosting the green economy. The first results of this work are to be presented at the COP 26 conference in Glasgow this November.
The Green Partnership with Morocco will be one of the EU’s first initiatives with a partner country that will aim to advance the external dimension of the European Green Deal through action on the ground.
In the context of reinforced cooperation, the European Union and Morocco also announced the payment of 12 million euro in the framework of the Competitiveness and Green Growth Programme, which supports green transition reforms for industries and regulatory convergence. They further announced the signing of a financing agreement of a €20M programme, co-financed by the French Development Agency (AFD), in support of rural development.
Once established, this Green Partnership should allow the EU and Morocco to:-
- progress towards their common goals of becoming low-carbon, climate-resilient economies and transition to a green economy;
- strengthen early policy dialogue and coordination on energy, climate change, environmental protection and the green economy at bilateral, regional and multilateral levels;
- foster innovative, sustainable, job-creating and environmentally friendly projects;
- develop triangular cooperation with other international actors to encourage a stronger commitment to achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement and collectively advance the global climate agenda.
The European Commission and Morocco are already collaborating in the framework of the Energy Transition Council under the COP26 Presidency. Both sides will present a progress report on the work done in the context of the Partnership in Glasgow this November at the COP26 conference.
“Morocco favours an approach that brings its strategic vision of sustainable development closer to that of Europe,” said Nasser Bourita.
“This Partnership will naturally form part of a synergy with the Kingdom’s New Development Model, one of the ambitions of which is to make Morocco an eco-responsible, competitive and carbon-neutral partner.”