Turkey and Morocco agree to review their FTA

Legislation | | MIC Customs Solutions |

The FTA between Turkey and Morocco is to be revised after rumblings of discontent from north Africa.

Turkey and Morocco have agreed to review and revise the terms of their current free trade agreement in a bid to ensure it is fit for purpose for both nations.

The two sides met at a summit of the Moroccan-Turkish Joint Committee in Rabat this month, where they said they would work on a "more balanced, important and high quality" relationship and raise bilateral trade to a more balanced level.

It was also recommended that Moroccan exports to Turkey should be promoted to provide a more equal footing for the north African country.

Work is expected to begin on addressing these topics immediately, with a further meeting to assess progress by the end of this month.

According to Turkish trade minister Ruhsar Pekcan, Turkey's trade with Africa rose by 12 per cent in 2019, something it is keen to build upon.

Meanwhile, in an interview with Anadolu Agency, she said further investments in Africa will be prompted by the trade volume between Turkey and north Africa increasing by ten per cent.

"Morocco is a country that will pave the way for further trade relations with the rest of the African continent in the eyes of Turkish businesspeople," Ms Pekcan added.

Last September, Turkey highlighted Morocco as part of its Export Master Plan to boost trade in the areas of machinery, automotive, electronics, chemicals and food.

It has also expressed its eagerness to strengthen ties with the Economic Community of West African States to facilitate economic collaboration.

However, Turkey and Morocco's relationship seems to have soured somewhat lately after the former imposed a 27 per cent tariff on apparel and textiles imports going to the latter.

Morocco subsequently threatened to walk out of the FTA it signed in 2004, also pointing towards rigid customs obstacles on Turkey-bound Moroccan products.

It will no doubt be hoped that negotiations can repair any damage done and hopefully ensure a fairer deal for both sides ahead of a Turkey-Africa summit in April 2020.