Morocco and Angola are strengthening diplomatic relations which have been stagnating for years. The Southern African nation has been one of the countries that supported the Polisario Front in the past.

Morocco has announced the normalization of diplomatic relations with Angola after years of estrangement. The decision came after Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita held talks with his Angolan counterpart, Manuel Domingos Augusto, Thursday in Rabat.

In a joint communiqué, issued after the two ministers met, Augusto stressed that Angola wishes to consolidate relations with Morocco and benefit from its expertise in several sectors, including tourism, says MAP news agency.

The Angolan minister highlighted «the great potential for Moroccan-Angolan cooperation», citing the presence of several Moroccan companies in Angola, in sectors related to tourism, insurance, infrastructure and education.

Meeting the King

Meanwhile, Bourita said that «important bilateral meetings» for both countries are underway to «identify projects, actions and initiatives that can feed bilateral relations, in accordance with the guidelines of the two head of States».

The two African nations announced that they are strengthening diplomatic ties after King Mohammed VI and Angolan President Joao Lorenzo held talks on several occasions.

In November 2017, the Moroccan sovereign and President Lorenzo met during the sidelines of the fifth edition of the African Union-European Union summit, hosted by Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire. Their second meeting took place in April, 2018 when they both attended the Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Climate Commission and the Blue Fund, hosted by Congo.

The two meetings have allowed the leaders to discuss means of boosting diplomatic relations between Morocco and Angola, which have been stagnating for years.

Turning the page

In fact, Angola has been for years one of the African countries that supported the Polisario Front. Luanda is a member of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), an inter-governmental organization led by South Africa and known for backing the Front.

Moreover, Angola was one of the countries (South Africa, Algeria), that opposed Morocco’s bid to join the African Union in January 2017.

Angola’s position regarding Morocco has, in fact, undergone several changes when President Joao Lorenzo took office in September 2017. He preceded Jose Eduardo dos Santos, who ruled the country for 38 years.