Mr. Mohammed BOUSSAID, Minister of Economy and Finance, Mr. Tsuneo KUROKAWA, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to Rabat and Mr. Tojima HITOSHI, the Resident Representative of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in Morocco, signed Friday, March 4th, 2016 in Rabat, the note exchange and the agreement for a loan amounting to 16 billion 347 million yen, which is $ 132 million for the financing of the second phase of the support Programme of the Green Morocco Plan. The signing ceremony was characterized by the presence of Mr. Aziz AKHANNOUCH, Minister of Agriculture and Maritime Fishing.
During his speech, the Minister of Economy and Finance stated that Japan, as a traditional partner of Morocco, has always supported our country in different phases of its economic and social development. "Japan helped fund numerous projects related to various sectors particularly in the fields of fisheries, infrastructure, management of water resources, drinking water supply in rural areas and the national education, "he added.
In another level, Mr. BOUSSAID emphasized the interest of African countries in the Moroccan experience and its expertise in the field of agriculture, developed with the support of its partners including the (JICA).
The Minister expressed his optimism as for the prospects of this cooperation, particularly the excellent political relations between the Kingdom of Morocco and Japan, the economic and commercial dynamism of this country and the very large opportunities Morocco can offer in terms of foreign direct investments.
The Japanese Ambassador in Rabat, on the other hand, recalled that the program is part of the implementation of the Green Morocco Plan, an ambitious project launched by the Kingdom of Morocco, which is intended for an economic, social and environmental development of the agricultural sector, in collaboration with the African Development Bank.
"Japan appreciates the efforts of the Ministry of Agriculture and Maritime Fishing for the reform of the agricultural sector. It also welcomes the initiative of the Ministry of Economy and Finance for the country's macroeconomic management”, stated Mr. KUROKAWA. He clarified:" I sincerely hope that this loan program in Japanese yen improves the conditions of the agricultural sector and contributes to mitigating the effects of climate change, whereas the Kingdom of Morocco is organizing the COP22 in Marrakech this year. "
The Ambassador stressed that 2016 is also the 60th anniversary of diplomatic bilateral relations between Morocco and Japan.
In his address, Mr. Tojima HITOSHI suggested that the (JICA) is committed to sustaining its support for the Kingdom’s sector-based policies, especially in the agricultural sector, with the objective of fighting against poverty and contributing to the improvement of green, sustainable and inclusive economic growth.
Speaking on this occasion, the representative of the African Development Bank (ADB) in Morocco stressed that the members of its Board of Directors consider the Green Morocco Plan as a model project.
In his speech, the Minister of Agriculture and Marine Fisheries expressed his pride in supporting the (JICA) and the (ADB) to the Green Morocco Plan. Mr. AKHANNOUCH highlighted the impact of the Green Morocco Plan on the rural population as well as the local development, while maintaining a focus on the support of partners.
This loan is intended to finance, in collaboration with the (ADB), the 2nd phase of the Green Morocco Plan Support Programme as part of the Accelerated Co-financing Facility for Africa (ACFA). It aims to contribute to strengthening the competitiveness of the agricultural sector for inclusive and green economic growth through a more sustainable management of natural resources, as well as the promotion of inclusive agricultural value chains.