- Your Majesty,
- Ladies and gentlemen,
It is an honor to join you today in this beautiful and historic city to celebrate the signing of the $697.5 million compact between the Kingdom of Morocco and the Millennium Challenge Corporation of the United States Government.
The compact’s investments in
- fruit tree productivity,
- small-scale fisheries, and
- artisan crafts
will increase productivity and employment in these high potential sectors. Additional investments in financial services and enterprise support will complement them. As an integrated, comprehensive program, the MCC-Morocco compact will make the promise of poverty reduction through growth a reality for many Moroccans.
I welcome this opportunity to share just three thoughts on the compact’s significance.
First, the process makes the Morocco-MCC compact significant. Moroccans developed this program themselves and identified their own development priorities. In workshops throughout Morocco, participation and dialogue were widespread. Sector meetings among microcredit associations as well as with the
- fishing, and
- artisan industries
confirm the breadth of input from all those who will benefit from the compact. Prime Minister Jettou’s personal involvement and leadership during compact development signaled commitment to progress at the highest level. The process resulted in a compact by Moroccans for Moroccans, in keeping with MCC’s principle of country ownership.
Second, the people who will benefit make the Morocco-MCC compact significant. The emphasis on the underemployed and unemployed—on
- youth and young adults,
- girls and women
—sends a clear message that reducing poverty depends on generating opportunities that include all segments of society in Morocco’s productive and economic life. Investments in training and skills development will make it possible to tap into those opportunities. Approximately 600,000 families will benefit directly over the life of the compact.
And, third, the platform upon which the Morocco-MCC compact is built is significant. The Compact is in perfect accord with the vision, efforts and priorities of the country with respect to development and economic growth. It is part of Morocco’s own national agenda for growth and economic development. The compact complements the reforms already underway to modernize and strengthen existing sectors and to make targeted investments in those industries, such as
- fishing, and
- artisan crafts,
in which Morocco has a competitive advantage. The compact also positions Morocco to take greater advantage of the ever-emerging opportunities created through free trade agreements with the United States, the European Union, and many others.
- The process that created the MCC-Morocco compact,
- the people who will benefit from it,
- and the platform for progress of which it is a strategic part,
signal Morocco’s commitment to poverty reduction and sustainable economic growth.
The Millennium Challenge Corporation provides aid from the American people to countries that recognize
- good government,
- good governance,
- the importance of investing in their citizens, and
- providing economic freedom—
all of this being the foundation upon which we can build programs to reduce poverty through sustained economic growth and foster stability and security.
Now, as the compact between Morocco and the Millennium Challenge Corporation enters the implementation stage, we shall, together, work to deliver transformative and meaningful results in the lives of Moroccans, and that will be the ultimate proof of our joint success.
I wish to thank you and your government for your staunch support of the compact.
The Millennium Challenge Corporation is very proud and honored to partner with the government and people of Morocco.