Tunis, 16th May 2012; Rabat, 17th May 2012. – A UfMS delegation headed by Deputy Secretary General Amb. Alpogan conducted a mission to Tunisia and Morocco in an effort to raise awareness for the two UfM labeled projects “Training Activities under the Program on the Development of a Network of Euro-Mediterranean Logistics Platforms” (LOGISMEDTA) and “Completion of the Central Section of the Trans-Maghreb Motorway Axis”, as well as to ensure the co-ownership of the governments of these countries, involved among others, in both projects.
In Tunisia, the UfM delegation met with Mr. Abdelkrim Harouni, Minister of Transport, who expressed his appreciation to the efforts of the UfM in promoting the two projects on a regional scale, and for coordinating the national actors involved in each project. The Delegation also held talks with Mr. Ghazi Cherif, Director General of Civil Engineering from the Ministry of Equipment; the Director General of Civil Engineering; Mr. Bechir Troudi, Head of the Commerce Department at the Ministry of Commerce; and Mr. Chaker Soltani, General Director of Debt Management and Financial Cooperation form the Ministry of Finance; as well as representatives of the African Development Bank, who agreed to work in close collaboration with the IFIs to adopt a new financial instrument, to support the projects in the Mediterranean Region.
The Tunisian Government has announced that it will provide a financial contribution for the LOGISMEDTA Project. The UfM will continue to support the Tunisian Authorities in order to launch the training activities of the LOGISMEDTA project during 2013. Regarding the Maghreb Motorway, the UfM will actively support the Transport and Equipment Ministries in the first phase of the project, including the execution of the preliminary design, technical assistance and training of the technical staff. The UfM will also search for financial support from IFIs for the phases of design and construction.
In Morocco, the Delegation met with Mr. Abdelaziz Rabbah, Minister of Transport and Equipment, who announced that Morocco would provide a financial contribution for the LOGISMEDTA project, proving the country’s co-ownership and active involvement. Morocco moreover, proposed to implement the inclusion in the LOGISMEDTA Project of two intermodal platforms. Minister Rabbah took the opportunity to highlight the need that the training activities are adapted to the specific situation of each country.
In this regard, due to the advanced situation of the logistic sector in Morocco, it could be considered as the future « hub » of logistics activities in the region and African continent more broadly. Morocco is ready to open the doors for private investors and to diffuse the best practices in the region, as well as to promote a regional observatory, in order to supervise the performance of the sector and develop a system of information.
Regarding the Trans-Maghreb Motorway Axis project, given its strategic regional character, Morocco is ready to launch the next phases of design and construction. The completion of the missing links of the Trans-Maghreb Motorway Axis would very importantly, link the most important cities and ports of the Mediterranean thus increasing trade and mobility of people and goods, and facilitating the integration of the countries in the African continent.