Morocco, Portugal Discuss Means to Step Up Cooperation in Higher Education, Scientific Research

Rabat — Minister of National Education, Vocational Training, Higher Education and Scientific Research, Saaid Amzazi, on Tuesday held talks through videoconference with the Portuguese minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education, Manuel Heitor.

These talks, which took place in the presence of the ambassador of the Kingdom of Morocco in Lisbon, Othmane Bahnini, and the ambassador of the Portuguese Republic in Rabat, Bernardo Futscher Pereira, as well as officials from the two countries, were the opportunity to examine the prospects for strengthening bilateral cooperation in the area of higher education and scientific research between the Kingdom of Morocco and the Portuguese Republic, said a statement from the ministry of National Education.

The two sides the discussed means to strengthen relations between the two countries and expand cooperation between Moroccan universities and research institutions and their Portuguese counterparts, particularly in terms of exchange of experiences and expertise, mobility of students and teachers, joint supervision of doctoral thesis and double degrees, the statement added.

It also involves the establishment of joint programs for the financing of scientific research and innovation in areas of common interest, both in terms of bilateral and multilateral cooperation. These programs will focus in particular on areas related to agro-resources, the argan tree, lessons learned from the Covid-19 pandemic, oceanography, artificial intelligence, space and satellites.

Amzazi underlined, on this occasion, that "this meeting is of particular importance with regards to strengthening bilateral activities and programs".

"It is indeed an opportunity to consolidate academic and scientific cooperation in priority areas and explore the prospects for its enhancement," he said, adding that "we call for the development of inter-university cooperation, which is a fundamental pillar for a lasting partnership".

"We are determined to strengthen cooperation with Morocco, particularly in academic and scientific issues. We will be very delighted to welcome Morocco to The Atlantic International Research Center, as a member", the Portuguese minister pointed out, as quoted in the statement.

The Kingdom of Morocco and the Portuguese Republic enjoy distinguished relations since the signing of the Cultural Cooperation Agreement in 1978, which led to numerous inter-ministerial agreements and joint programs between the universities of the two countries, the statement added.

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