Mr. Salah Eddine MEZOUAR, Minister of Economy and Finance, Mr. Ahmed Akhchichine, Minister of National Education, Higher Education, Training and Frameworks for Scientific Research and His Excellency Mr. Eneko LANDABURU, Ambassador Head of the European Union Delegation in Rabat signed Wednesday, September 8th 2010 at the Ministry of Economy and Finance the amendment to the financing agreement program to support the implementation of the literacy strategy.
This new financial support of 10 million euros is added to the initial donation of 17 million euros made by the EU under the new European Neighbourhood policy for the education sector that enjoys a high priority in the agenda of the Government of His Majesty the King Mohamed VI, may God assist him.
This European support is also significant for the government in its fight against illiteracy and achieving the Millennium goals.
The program to support the implementation of the literacy strategy aims to reduce the illiteracy rate, targeting areas facing problems and primarily people aged 16 to 35 years, including the development of awareness campaigns and strengthening the coherence and cooperation between the various literacy programs. Mr. Eneko Landaburu stated that Morocco made great strides in recent years in the fight against illiteracy. But these efforts must be maintained. Thus, in order to consolidate the momentum toward greater modernization and progress, the EU decided to increase its initial contribution to the Moroccan strategy literacy to DH 110 million, bringing the EU grant in this field to 297 million DH for the period 2008-2013.
Since the signing, in 2008, of the financing agreement between the EU and Morocco on this support program, positive and encouraging results on the decline of illiteracy were registered. However, 32% of the population is still estimated as illiterate.
Within the framework of the advanced status, strengthening bilateral relations aims to support the endogenous dynamics facing the Kingdom and to speed up the movement of the Morocco-EU partnership. Thus, the EU additional grant for literacy support the extension of the action taken, particularly for women, and strengthen efforts to ensure learning opportunities and sustainable socio-professional integration, especially for young illiterate adults.
The education sector together with health sector benefited, in recent years, from support and most important investments granted by the EU to Morocco. Concerning education, the EU is currently funding programs in Morocco for an amount close to 1 billion 600 million DH, (Education Sector Programme of 1 billion DH, Neighbourhood Investment education Facility of 165 million DH, which support the implementation of the emergency program, Literacy Sector Programme, and all TEMPUS and ERASMUS MUNDUS projects that promote academic cooperation between the EU and Morocco).