UK Think-tank lauds Royal Initiative offering Atlantic Access to Sahel Countries

UK Think-tank lauds Royal Initiative offering Atlantic Access to Sahel Countries

King Mohammed VI’s Initiative offering Atlantic Ocean access to Sahel countries embodies a comprehensive approach to tackling the challenges facing African landlocked countries, says the London-based Institute for Free Trade (IFT) in a report released Monday.
This initiative not only aims to unlock the region’s potential but also solidifies Morocco’s role as a key player in African development and cooperation, underlines the research policy paper titled: “Improving UK-Morocco relationship –Unlocking Untapped Potential.”

The Sahel initiative reaches out to other Africa countries and serves as a bridge between Europe and Africa, says the report, noting that the Sahel faces economic challenges. However, it is also an area of untapped opportunity.

The Moroccan initiative comes to help these African countries address the economic and development challenges by channelling investments that generate lasting, shared wealth.

It also seeks structured, mutually beneficial projects rather than basic assistance as well as empowering and educating people, in addition to security measures.

The initiative is a pivotal element in Morocco’s strategy for African engagement, emphasising South-South cooperation and win-win partnerships, says the research paper.

It reflects Morocco’s vision of a robust, influential Africa and seeks to catalyse regional growth and development, addressing challenges such as terrorism and separatism.

Morocco’s commitment to this initiative builds on humanitarian and sustainable development support deployed across the Sahel with the construction of healthcare & educational facilities, debt relief for underdeveloped African countries and bringing in significant investments in countries nations like Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso, and Chad.

Morocco provides training to hundreds of imams from Sahel countries for better religious understanding and cooperation. It also offers proactive responses to climate change with the establishment of a Climate Commission for the Sahel.

According to IFT, the North African Kingdom can also serve a connector between the Trans Africa Network and the UK, EU and US. It is important for the UK, EU and US that nodes in Africa that connect in to trade corridors are sustainable economic generators to counter investment which China and Russia are making in the African continent as a whole.

Furthermore, Moroccan Sahel initiative offers huge opportunities for UK-Morocco collaboration to diversify and enhance global supply chains.
Recent developments in the Panama Canal, and the conflict in the Red Sea at the Bab Al Mandeb showed the need to find alternative trade routes and diversification of supply chains.

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