The Moroccan Sahara, "an important commercial crossroads" between Morocco and African countries, will become a leading South-South cooperation pole, said on Tuesday minister Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccans abroad, Nasser Bourita.
"The Moroccan Sahara region is an important commercial crossroads and a South-South cooperation pole. It connects Morocco to its African depth", Bourita pointed out at a joint press conference with Côte d’Ivoire’s minister of African Integration and Ivoirians abroad, Ally Coulibaly.
This was clearly reflected in the opening of several diplomatic representations of brotherly and friendly African countries, said Bourita, who co-chaired with Coulibaly the opening ceremony of the Consulate General of the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire in Laayoune.
In this regard, Bourita noted that the diplomacy of the two countries has always worked within the framework of an active solidarity with regard to the supreme interests of the two friendly States, adding that the opening of this consulate reflects the attachment of Côte d’Ivoire to its position on the Sahara issue.
"It is a very important symbolic act. Côte d'Ivoire has always stood alongside Morocco in all the struggles for the preservation of the territorial integrity of the Kingdom through positions, mobilization and acts", he stressed.
The opening of this consulate general is not only the expression of this clear political position, but also an instrument for strengthening bilateral cooperation, he said, recalling the several visits paid by HM King Mohammed VI to this African brotherly country.
The Moroccan minister also announced that 30 scholarships will be granted to Ivoirian students who wish to pursue their training in Laayoune in the fields of marine-related occupations, renewable energy, agriculture and tourism.
This is the fifth diplomatic representation inaugurated in Laayoune, after those of the Union of the Comoros, opened in December, Gabon, Sao Tome and Principe and the Central African Republic, inaugurated in January.