Which European countries hate Spain

Relations between Morocco and Europe, especially the European Union

Table of Contents

1 Introduction

2. The bilateral relations with France and Spain
2.1. Brief historical outline of the relationship with the colonial power France
2.2. The current state of relations with France
2.3. Relations with Spain

3. The EU and the Mediterranean
3.1. Historical outline: The four phases of the EU's Mediterranean policy
Phase 1: The first association agreements, the 1960s
Phase 2: The more global orientation of Mediterranean policy; from
Phase 3: A renewed Mediterranean policy; from
Phase 4: From the Euro-Maghreb to the Euro-Mediterranean partnership 1992 -
3.2. The Barcelona Process, the start of an EU multilateral initiative in the Mediterranean region
3.3. The goals and structure of the Euro-Mediterranean cooperation after Barcelona

4. Morocco's relations with the EU
4.1. The status quo of interregional activities in Morocco and the agreements with the EU

5. The EU - Morocco Association Agreement
5.1. The nature and structure of the new generation of association agreements
5.2. The Association Agreement with Morocco

6. Financial cooperation: financial protocols and the MEDA program

7. Conclusion: Who is the benefit of Euro-Mediterranean integration? Perspectives for Morocco

List of abbreviations

Documents and primary sources


1 Introduction

The aim of this work is to present the relationship between Morocco and Europe. The focus is on relations with the European Union and its latest initiative, the Euro-Mediterranean partnership. The origins of the relationship are of course before the colonial period, but during the latter period the kingdom's close contact with neighboring Europe was established. This period is still formative for today's relations. In this historical context, I am describing the first of the three pillars of Morocco’s relations with Europe, namely the bilateral relations with European states, primarily France and secondarily Spain. The second of the pillars are the bilateral agreements concluded between Morocco and the Union after the creation of the European Community and later Union. The third and most recent pillar are the multilateral conferences of the process of a Euro-Mediterranean partnership that began in Barcelona. They are intended to supplement bilateral relations or create a new framework for them (e.g. the basic structure of the association agreement). This partnership is structured multilaterally, it includes the countries bordering the Mediterranean, and is intended to add cultural and social aspects to the previous almost purely economic relationship.

Methodologically, I would like to subject primary sources to the analysis, such as the association agreement between Morocco and the EU, as well as expand the findings by consulting secondary literature. I am aiming for a historical and political science presentation, which, despite the limited space, should not exclude legal and economic aspects.

The starting point for my presentation is therefore a historical outline of the relationship with the colonial power France. This is followed by a consideration of the status quo of bilateral relations with France and Spain, which has grown in importance in recent years. I will limit myself to the broad outlines of the relationship, for example not going into the bilateral agreements in detail and also largely excluding the Western Sahara problem. This was a problematic point in relations with France and Spain. Nowadays, however, it has become quiet around her, at least in relation to relations with Morocco.

This is followed by a description of the development of European Mediterranean policy. In this context I look at Morocco in the multilateral Barcelona Process. Then I will outline the current situation in Morocco in an international context. In this context, I will briefly discuss regional partnerships that, for their part, want to establish a relationship with the EU. One example would be the UMA, l’Union du Maghreb Arabe, an attempt at cooperation between the Maghreb countries.

Then I will look more closely at the Association Agreement; the bilateral part of the relationship with Europe. The final point are the financial instruments of cooperation, followed by the conclusion, which is devoted to economic perspectives. The process of integration in the Mediterranean competes with that in the East. Every integration process in the Union depends on the priority set and the resources thus allocated. In this context, the process of enlargement of the Union towards the east could influence the integration process in the Mediterranean area, two processes with different objectives: in the first, the enlargement of the Union, through the accession of the participating countries; in the latter, the creation of a free trade area by 2010.

2. The bilateral relations with France and Spain

2.1. Brief historical outline of the relationship with the colonial power France

The cornerstone for Morocco's economic and political orientation, primarily towards Europe, was laid by the colonial power France, which, according to the Algésiras Agreement, occupied most of Morocco from 1906 to 1912 and established a protectorate in 1912 that existed until independence in 1956. In 1957 Morocco is constituted as a kingdom.1 In the same year, the young kingdom signed several cooperation agreements (conventions decoopération administrative, technique, culturelle, judiciaire) with the ex-colonial power, which enabled 35,000 protectorate officials to continue working as technical advisers. In 1963, seven years after independence, French industry controls half of Moroccan industry. The Moroccan King Hassan II feels compelled to press ahead with decolonization. The “policy of Moroccanization” of landed property and factories leads to a decline in the French presence, but naturally to a tighter relationship with France. Tensions between France under General de Gaule and Morocco under Hassan II culminate in the Ben Barka affair. Relationships normalized again under Valéry Giscard d'Estaing and resulted in an intensified cooperation, which was continued under François Mitterrand.2

2.2. The current state of relations with France

France was and is the most important economic partner, the largest lender and financial partner. More than 400 French multinational corporations operate in Morocco. The greatest number of tourists in Morocco come from France, most of the Moroccan emigrants go there.

The French embassy in Rabat is ranked fourth most important by French diplomacy after Berlin, London and Washington. France maintains the largest network of cultural and educational institutions, which helps maintain the high level of the French language, especially among Morocco's political and economic elite.

France claims the mediator role between the EU and the Arab states in the Maghreb region, based on the good relations, rooted in the historical presence.3

2.3. Relations with Spain

Relations between Spain and Morocco grew ever closer in the 1990s. In terms of economic relations in particular, Spain outperforms Morocco's main trading partner, France, in certain years (in terms of both the exchange of goods and direct investment).

Spain is particularly interested in its southern neighbor due to various contact points, be it the fishing zone, Moroccan immigrants, guest workers, students, illegal immigration, drug smuggling, and last but not least, agricultural competition.

Spain, which wants to become a major power in the Mediterranean again, sees Morocco as its spearhead in North Africa. In this respect, it also tries to gain influence culturally by creating a network of Spanish schools.4

3. The EU and the Mediterranean

3.1. Historical outline: the four phases of the EU's Mediterranean policy

Phase 1: The first association agreements, the 1960s

The first phase of the EC's relations with the Mediterranean region in the 1960s was shaped by the geopolitical interest in keeping Greece and Turkey in the western bloc. Apart from these countries, only the Maghreb states Morocco and Tunisia are the subject of a common policy.5

With Art. 238 in the Treaty of Rome in 1957, the European Community laid the foundation for maintaining relations with the colonies after their independence. At the beginning, these relations were shaped by France, which has strong economic ties to Morocco and Tunisia in particular. In 1963, these two countries initiate negotiations on Association Treaties, which are signed in 1969. These treaties are purely economic agreements, but contain a clause that requires compliance with the Charter of the United Nations.

Phase 2: The more global orientation of Mediterranean policy; from 1972

At the Paris summit in 1972, the basis was laid for negotiations on closer cooperation with the Mediterranean countries and Jordan, which began in 1973. A multilateral treaty is not concluded, as in the framework of the AKP, but rather parallel negotiations between the EC and the individual states. The agreements, now cooperation agreements, are concluded in April 1976 with the three Maghreb states, with Egypt, Jordan and Syria in January 1977, Lebanon in May 1977, and Yugoslavia in April 1980. The aim of these agreements is to facilitate the circulation of industrial goods, as well as however limited, of agricultural products. With the former, the tariff restrictions are lifted, with the latter only reduced.

The admission of Spain and Portugal to the EC in 1986 led Morocco to a symbolic act in July 1987 to demonstrate its political orientation towards Europe: the application for admission to the EC. The foreign ministers of the twelve, as expected, reject this request, but it does rekindle the Euro-Moroccan dialogue.

A fisheries agreement between the EC and Morocco was concluded on February 24, 1987, replacing the existing agreements with Portugal and Spain and extending them to all Member States. The cooperation agreement between the EC and Morocco of 1976 - as well as those of the other Mediterranean countries - will be adapted to the changed conditions following the admission of Spain and Portugal.

The aim of the 2nd generation contracts is to stimulate the exchange of goods between the EC and the Mediterranean countries, to promote industrial and agricultural development and to transfer financial resources in the form of aid and loans to these countries.

This policy is not successful, the exchange remains one-sided and the dependency of the Mediterranean countries increases instead of their economies being consolidated. That is why the EC is making another change in its Mediterranean policy.

Phase 3: A renewed Mediterranean policy; from 1989

In 1989 the European Commission published an evaluation of Mediterranean policy since the 1970s and the proposal for an adaptation in the document “Vers une PolitiqueMéditerranéenne Rénovée”.6

In 1992, the European Union, now since the Maastricht Treaty, created the legal framework for expanding cooperation by increasing financial aid and improving access to the European market, and the regional dimension of cooperation was gaining in importance. The institutional framework, based on the cooperation agreements, is left as it is.7

Phase 4: From the Euro-Maghreb to the Euro-Mediterranean partnership 1992-1995

Since 1992, the project of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership has been developing parallel to the renewed Mediterranean policy.

The pillars of this partnership should be:

- political dialogue
- economic cooperation
- Free exchange of goods
- financial cooperation


1 historical key data from Le Petit Larousse

2 SEIGNARD Laurent: Le Pari européen du Maroc, S70 in NOUAILHAT Yves-Henri

3 NOTE, Pierre; 2001; S223-224

4 NOTE, Pierre; 2001; S223

5 from KHADER Bichara: Le Partenariat euro-méditerranéen: le processus de Barcelone, une synthèse de la problematique in KHADER Bichara (éd); 2001 as well as MEKAOUI, Adam; 2000

6 Communication de la Commission au Conseil SEC (90) 812 final "Vers une politique méditerranéennerénovée"

7 MEKAOUI, Adam; 2000; S35

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