Rabat — Minister of Energy, Mining and Environment, Aziz Rabbah, and the Vice-President of the Spanish Government and Minister of Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge, Teresa Ribera Rodriguez, held talks, via videoconference, on strengthening partnership between the two countries in the energy sector.
The talks, held on Thursday, are part of a series of consultations between the two ministers, the last of which was held last June, with the aim of giving new impetus to the existing strategic cooperation between Morocco and Spain, which is part of a vision of regional integration placing the two countries as two points of connection between Europe and Africa, says a statement from the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Environment.
The two parties discussed several issues of common interest, including natural gas, the electrical interconnection between the two countries, the partnership in the field of hydrogen, as well as the implementation of the Joint Declaration of the road map on the trade of electricity based on renewable energies, signed between Morocco, Spain, Portugal, France and Germany, on the sidelines of the COP22, held in Marrakech in November 2016.
Regarding natural gas, the two parties reiterated their common will to give new impetus to discussions relating to bidirectional natural gas flows.
On the electricity interconnection, the two officials agreed to activate the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding relating to the development of a third Morocco-Spain electricity interconnection, the statement said, adding that they also called for increasing the activities of the working group made up of the National Office for Electricity and Drinking Water (ONEE) and the Spanish company "Red Electrica".
As for cooperation in the field of hydrogen, the two ministers underlined the importance of this new partnership and proposed that contacts could be established by the competent Moroccan authorities with their Spanish counterparts, in order to examine the possibilities of cooperation offered by this sector.
They also agreed to activate the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding for the establishment of a strategic partnership in the energy sector between the two countries, by holding in the coming weeks the 1st meeting of the Committee of Energy Partnership (EPC) instituted by this memorandum, the statement adds.
At the end of this meeting, Mr. Rabbah and Ms. Rodriguez agreed to continue discussions and consultations through the holding of regular meetings to establish an agenda for the implementation of projects of common interest and to further strengthen bilateral cooperation in the field of energy.
This meeting was attended by the directors of the National Office of Hydrocarbons and Mining (ONHYM), Amina Benkhadra and ONEE, Abderrahim El Hafidi, in addition to officials from the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Environment.