Spain uses summit to praise Morocco for fair trade winds

Prime Minister Rajoy’s visit to counterpart in Rabat focuses on business opportunities

Together, we will deal with the crisis better. That was the message sent out by Mariano Rajoy and his Moroccan counterpart, Abdelilah Benkirane, at a summit in Rabat on Wednesday. Seven ministers and the cream of Spanish business accompanied the prime minister to Morocco, including the president of the CEOE business federation. Rajoy praised the "ever-stronger commercial and economic links that translate into jobs and growth in both countries."

The prime minister continued by extolling the virtue of his reforms and the 2013 state budget, "made with criteria that deepen the reorganization of the Spanish economy and its competitiveness."

During Rajoy’s first months in power, relations with Spain’s southern neighbor have been marked by simmering political tension over the exclaves of Ceuta and Melilla, but at the same time commercial interests have been strengthened.

Benkirane took up the baton in his speech: "The economic trade links between Morocco and Spain will help to overcome the economic challenges both our countries face," the Moroccan prime minister said. "We will rejoice to see our Spanish brothers succeed in Morocco."

Rosell and the president of the Moroccan business federation CGEM, Miriem Bensalah-Chakroun, also pursued a similar line. "The current situation requires a new and daring focus from us," said Bensalah-Chakroun. Rosell stated that Spain had overtaken France as Morocco's main trade partner this year and also that the African nation's northern neighbor will end the year as its largest foreign investor.

"Morocco and Spain offer unique opportunities that the current situation clearly demonstrates," added Rajoy.

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