In recent years post-Brexit, both nations have shown great willingness and determination to further boost bilateral relations at all levels

Infrastructure cooperation strengthens bilateral ties between Morocco and the UK

Marruecos, destino ideal para los inversores españoles - PHOTO/ATALAYAR

The UK and Morocco share good bilateral ties, and the two countries have demonstrated in recent years post-Brexit their shared determination to further strengthen relations at all levels, especially in the political and economic spheres with a focus on the areas of trade and infrastructure. 

  1. Delegation of British experts visiting Rabat
  2. Workshop for senior Moroccan officials
  3. UK-Morocco: cooperation towards recognition of the Moroccan ownership of the Sahara

In this line, the UK Embassy in Rabat announced, in a statement, the organisation of a visit of experts from the Infrastructure and Projects Authority (IPA) to Morocco, from 19 to 23 February. 

Delegation of British experts visiting Rabat

The delegation was composed of several British experts led by the deputy head of international affairs of the UK's centre of expertise for infrastructure IPA, Javier Encindel. 

According to a statement from the British Embassy in Morocco, this visit included meetings of the IPA representatives with senior officials from Moroccan ministries and agencies. The main objective is to facilitate the exchange of experiences in infrastructure and the development of important projects. 

The meetings between the two parties constitute an occasion for the IPA to "dig deeper" into the country's priorities and challenges, as well as serve as a platform of opportunities for the development of affordable services, sustainable and socially inclusive infrastructure.

Gran Estadio de Tánger - PHOTO/X @FRMFOFFICIEL
Tangier's Grand Stadium - PHOTO/X @FRMFOFFICIEL

It is worth noting that these meetings are very timely as they coincide with Rabat preparing to introduce several giant projects and reforms to the country's infrastructure for the 2030 World Cup. This entails discussions during this visit on such infrastructure projects. 

Morocco, as co-host of the World Cup alongside Spain and Portugal, has less than seven years to strengthen its infrastructure projects and be ready for the international tournament. 

Morocco will also host the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations next year. This is why the Maghreb country needs to upgrade its infrastructure, hence the possibility and importance of discussing cooperation between the UK and Morocco in this regard. 


Workshop for senior Moroccan officials

As part of the visit, the IPA has also organised a three-day workshop from Wednesday to Friday co-hosted by the Moroccan Ministry of Finance and involving senior officials from various Moroccan government departments.

The workshop shares the UK's approach to infrastructure development and lessons learned from more than 20 years of IPA experience on South Africa's infrastructure and the expansion of Heathrow Airport, according to the Embassy statement.

This workshop is also a space to open debate on "a long-term strategy for infrastructure development", as well as to shed light on UK best practice in attracting capital and expertise from the public and private sectors.

Casablanca, Morocco - PHOTO/ATALAYAR

UK-Morocco: cooperation towards recognition of the Moroccan ownership of the Sahara

It should be recalled that the strong bilateral ties between Morocco and the UK have led several British MPs to urge their government to consolidate relations with the North African country by recognising Morocco's territorial integrity and sovereignty over its provinces in Western Sahara.

In this context, the British newspaper Express reported earlier this month that senior Conservative politicians urged the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to change "UK policy and recognise Morocco's sovereignty over the Western Sahara region".

The British MP Liam Fox is one of these politicians who sent a letter to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, David Cameron, in which he underlined the importance of a more proactive and favourable position of the United Kingdom on the question of Western Sahara. 

Adopting such a position by the UK on the Moroccan autonomy initiative will not only benefit diplomatic relations, but will also contribute to maintaining peace in the region and consolidating international cooperation, the same Conservative MP confirmed.  

Liam Fox underlined the importance of a stable and constructive solution to the Sahara dispute and this is what Morocco's initiative brings; being a key player and ally of the UK in areas of mutual interest such as security, trade and diplomacy. 

In the framework of a 'win win' partnership, given the realism of the Moroccan approach that allows progress to be made on the issue, British recognition of the Moroccan ownership of the Sahara is also important for the fight against irregular migration.