The moroccan press
Morocco succeeded in rising to the challenge of the 22nd conference of parties to the UN framework convention on climate change (COP22), which was held on Nov. 7-18 in Marrakesh, said, on Tuesday in Rabat, minister delegate for the environment Hakima El Haite.
Hill International to Manage Construction of New Facility at APM Terminals MedPort Tangier Container Terminal in Morocco
Hill International (NYSE:HIL), the global leader in managing construction risk, announced today that it has received a contract from APM Terminals MedPort Tangier S.A. to provide project management and supervision engineering services during the construction of a new container facility at the Tangier-Med Port Container Terminal in Morocco. The two-year contract has an estimated value to Hill of between approximately €5.4 million ($6 million) to €6.7 million ($7.4 million).
The Tangier-Med Port complex is one of the largest ports in Africa. It is constructed on the Straits of Gibraltar, a central artery of global shipping with over 200 vessels a day passing through carrying trade between Asia, Europe, Africa and the Americas. APM Terminals MedPort Tangier is an international container terminal operator and part of the Dutch-based APM Terminals global terminal network – one of the world’s leading port operators. www.apmterminals.com
“We are honored that APM Terminals MedPort Tangier has chosen Hill to assist with this important project,” said Waleed Abdel-Fattah, Senior Vice President and Managing Director (Africa) for Hill’s Project Management Group. “We are confident that our team will deliver on all expectations,” Abdel-Fattah added.
Hill International, with 4,400 professionals in 100 offices worldwide, provides program management, project management, construction management, construction claims and other consulting services primarily to the buildings, transportation, environmental, energy and industrial markets.
Engineering News-Record magazine recently ranked Hill as the eighth largest construction management firm in the United States.
Source: Hill International, Inc.
Washington, DC, December 6, 2016 (MACP) — During a historic visit to Nigeria that began late last week, Morocco’s King Mohammed VI presided over the signing ceremony of an ambitious agreement to construct a transcontinental gas pipeline. At completion, the pipeline will bring Nigeria’s energy resources through West Africa to Morocco; and eventually to European markets with Morocco serving as a gateway.
Speaking at the ceremony, Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs Geoffrey Onyeama said that one objective of the pipeline is the acceleration of “electrification projects across the region, thereby serving as a backbone for the creation of a competitive regional electricity market with the potential to be connected to the European energy market.”
Ithmar Capital, Morocco’s sovereign wealth fund and co-partner in the venture with the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, said in a release, “The new collaboration between Morocco and Nigeria is intended to set a model for South-South cooperation and act as a catalyst for African economic opportunities. It aligns with His Majesty, King Mohammed VI’s regional strategy, in which he has declared that Africa is the top priority in Morocco’s foreign policy and that the Kingdom will contribute to economic, social services and human development projects that directly improve the lives of people in the region. This includes on projects related to the energy sector, and notably sustainable and green projects.”
The pipeline is one element of the Strategic Partnership Agreement and Memorandum of Understanding signed between the two countries, agreements that “will see [Morocco and Nigeria] cooperate on bilateral investment for the first time in recent history,” according to Ithmar Capital. The agreements also encourage joint investments in food security, renewable energy, natural resource management, and agribusiness and fertilizer production.
The agreements and visit symbolize a new chapter in Nigerian-Moroccan relations, and follow recent visits to Rwanda, Tanzania, Madagascar, and Ethiopia in a continued signal of King Mohammed VI’s commitment to strengthening Morocco’s African diplomacy.
Contact: Jordana Merran, 202.470.2049
The Moroccan American Center for Policy (MACP) is a non-profit organization whose principal mission is to inform opinion makers, government officials, and interested publics in the United States about political and social developments in Morocco and the role being played by the Kingdom of Morocco in broader strategic developments in North Africa, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East.
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In the first Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) compact with Morocco that ended in 2013, more than $19m was allocated to planting and improving fruit trees. The agricultural portion included three efforts related to fruit trees: improving the use of scarce water resources through better irrigation and watering techniques; increasing the number of new plantings of olive and almond tree; and improving the production and marketing of these crops. More than 145,000 acres were included in the MCC olive tree program and the Moroccan government funded plantings on an additional 47,000 acres. It is anticipated that the olive trees will begin to bear fruit during the upcoming year, with higher yields already being realized from plots that were targeted for improved watering and production.
The High Atlas Foundation makes significant efforts through several of its environmental and economic development programs to enhance the use of fruit and other trees to improve the lives and livelihood of rural communities. It has embarked on several ground-breaking projects to heal the land through improved irrigation and water-capture technologies and enable rural communities to implement economic development projects around innovative nursery and tree planting efforts.
A recent article in Reuters looked closely at another project that is enabling farmers to grow more olives, utilize less water-intensive crops, and learn to market their production more effectively to produce higher incomes for the communities.
Through more precise irrigation, pruning, and the use of electronic equipment, local farmers have been able to more than quadruple their yields from 20 to 100 kg or more. In addition, the quality has increased due to more immediate pressing of the olives.
This is only one of the many projects that are part of Plan Vert Maroc (PVM), the national effort to improve the agricultural sector. There are two parts of the plan, one for large corporate-style farms, and a second for small landholders organized around community coops to more efficiently manage their production and marketing.
An additional benefit, targeted by both PVM and the MCC, is increased opportunities for young men and women to work in agriculture in rural communities rather than migrate to urban areas. The teams of young people working with the farmers are well-trained, have access to modern equipment and technology, and enjoy a higher quality of life than might otherwise be available.
Of course, the farmers are enthusiastic as well. According to the article, “Khalid Batrah, 42, is one of the farmers participating in the project to develop agricultural value chains, backed by the Moroccan government and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), a U.N. agency that supports rural people. Thanks to a drip irrigation system, which delivers water directly to the plants’ roots, Batrah has branched out into melon, pea and bean production on his 10-hectare (24.7-acre) olive farm, roughly tripling his revenues.”
Using drip irrigation has enabled Batran to see immediate results in yields and “He now employs three permanent workers and as many as 100 people during the olive harvest.” The next step? Installing solar panels to power a water pump, of course.
These improvements are critical, as environmental models consistently indicate that Morocco is among the top 30 countries to be negatively affected by climate change. This past year, the country saw a decrease of 6% in its GDP due to poor harvests as a consequence of low rainfall, which will only get more scarce in the future.
In the Atlas Mountains, the story is similar, with an added benefit that planting trees slows erosion and rebuilds slopes for agriculture. Planting olive trees and using better techniques are critical for both retaining soil and generating income. “The trees stabilize the soil, suck planet-warming carbon dioxide from the air and provide a cash crop for local people,” according to IFAD technical expert Jacopo Monzini. “Climate problems come from bad management of natural resources,” he said, noting that deforestation of mountain slopes worsens erosion. “So we are investing to re-establish key ecosystems.”
Today, the olive trees help prevent rainwater running straight off the land into the river below, a key both to preventing erosion and preserving water in an area with other irrigation available. These changes have had an impact of all segments of rural communities, encouraging young people to stay working on the land with higher quality returns, and enabling older relatives to gain experience and skills in new agricultural opportunities. Income earned through their cooperatives provides opportunities, gives women greater freedom to experiment with other income-generating options such as producing honey, links the farmers more closely to regional markets and beyond, and frees the beneficiaries to believe in futures that a generation ago were unimaginable.
The post From These Roots: Olive Trees Promise Brighter Future in Morocco – Jean R. AbiNader appeared first on Morocco On The Move.
HM the King writes a new page of Africa’s history through setting a strategic course for the continent: MEP
Through his many African tours, HM King Mohammed VI writes a new page of the continent's history by setting a strategic course for Africa, said on Monday member of the European parliament Rachida Dati.
On the occasion of a new African tour which took the sovereign to Ethiopia, Senegal, Rwanda and Madagascar, HM the king laid the foundations for a geo-strategic partnership with Africa which covers several areas, including energy and agriculture, Dati said in a statement received by MAP.
With the return of Morocco to the African Union (AU), the Kingdom will bring to Africa its know-how and multifaceted expertize, said, on Saturday in Bamako, former Malian president Dioncounda Traoré.
The return of Morocco to the AU is natural, said Traoré who was speaking during an event on the said return, noting that Africa will benefit from the Kingdom's know-how, multifaceted expertize and great culture.
Signed Agreements Between Morocco, Nigeria Attest to Common Will to Strengthen Bilateral Cooperation (Nigerian FM)
The agreements signed on Friday in Abuja under the chairmanship of HM King Mohammed VI and Nigerian President, H.E Muhammadu Buhari, attest to the common will of both countries to promote bilateral cooperation, said Nigerian Foreign minister, Geoffrey Onyeama.