King Mohammed VI has expressed Morocco’s resolve to bolster China-Arab Strategic Partnership, while remaining committed to the just, legitimate causes of Arab countries and while helping to bring about a more equitable and balanced global political and economic system.
In a speech addressed to the 1st China-Arab Summit, held Friday in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, the Sovereign said that “The Kingdom of Morocco is reaffirming its readiness to contribute effectively to taking this (Arab-Chinese) strategic partnership to a new level in all sectors, while remaining committed to the just, legitimate causes of Arab countries. The aim is to help bring about a more equitable and balanced global political and economic system, making sure the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states as well as non-interference in their affairs are respected in full.”
The Sovereign underlined, in this speech, which was read by Head of Government Aziz Akhannouch, that Morocco, in line with a belief in the need for, and the pertinence of the consolidation of the strategic partnership between China and Arab countries, has contributed to the endorsement and success of the important initiatives developed within that framework.
The King also affirmed that Arab-Chinese relations which are diverse and have been growing at political, economic, commercial, cultural and human levels, “offer great potential, which should be optimally leveraged. This would contribute to fulfilling the aspirations of the Arab world in terms of real economic take-off and scientific and technological progress, building, to that end, on development projects, infrastructure and logistical support, human development and the transfer of technology.”
Recalling that China is the first economic partner of Arab countries, the Sovereign deplored that trade still fall short of the growth potential “in spite of the fact that trade between the two sides has grown significantly in terms of volume, diversity and intensity – standing at about $240bn in 2020.”
“There is also a significant deficit in terms of Arab exports to China, with the exception of oil and gas,” said the King, calling for working together to promote and diversify Arab exports, making them the driving force for the development of Arab industrial, agricultural and service sectors.
The Sovereign noted that the number of Chinese tourists visiting Arab countries is still inferior to that of Arab tourists visiting the Republic of China, calling, in this regard, for measures to increase tourist flows in both directions “in order to achieve our aspirations, namely closer relations and greater interaction between the Arab and Chinese peoples.”
The Sovereign also said that the close collaboration between China and the Arab world has been of great importance and relevance throughout the period of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The cooperation, in the health sector, between China and Arab countries during the pandemic – which in some cases, as with the Kingdom of Morocco, developed into an institutional, scientific and industrial partnership, especially in the area of vaccines – is clear testimony to the importance and relevance of the close cooperation uniting us,” said King Mohammed VI.
Regarding China-Morocco relations, the Sovereign expressed his deep satisfaction with the solid, longstanding friendship between the two countries, commending the fruitful cooperation in various sectors, as well as our constructive coordination and consultation on various issues of common concern.
Underlining that both countries share a sincere, common desire to further expand their relationship, the King stressed Morocco’s endorsement of the One-China policy as a basis for the relations between the two friendly nations.
“Our support for the initiatives put forward by China, such as the ‘Group of Friends of the Global Development Initiative’, reflects the extent of the close cooperation between our two countries,” said the Sovereign, noting that Morocco is also keen to press ahead with the consolidation of the “strategic partnership” between the two nations, concluded in May 2016, and the “Memorandum of Understanding on the Belt and Road Initiative.”