31.3.2020   

EN

Official Journal of the European Union

L 98/45


DECISION No 1/2020

OF THE EU-KINGDOM OF MOROCCO ASSOCIATION COMMITTEE

of 16 March 2020

concerning the exchange of information between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco for the purpose of evaluating the impact of the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters on the amendment of Protocols 1 and 4 to the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Kingdom of Morocco, of the other part [2020/468]

THE EU-KINGDOM OF MOROCCO ASSOCIATION COMMITTEE,

Having regard to the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement of 26 February 1996 establishing an association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Kingdom of Morocco, of the other part, and in particular Article 83 thereof,

Having regard to the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco of 25 October 2018 on the amendment of Protocols 1 and 4 to the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Kingdom of Morocco, of the other part,

Whereas:

(1)

The Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco on the amendment of Protocols 1 and 4 to the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Kingdom of Morocco, of the other part (‘the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters’) entered into force on 19 July 2019.

(2)

The Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters was concluded without prejudice to the respective positions of the European Union with regard to the status of Western Sahara and of the Kingdom of Morocco with regard to that region.

(3)

Under the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters, products originating in Western Sahara that are subject to controls by the customs authorities of the Kingdom of Morocco benefit from the same trade preferences as those granted by the European Union to products covered by the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an association between the European Communities and their Member States,of the one part, and the Kingdom of Morocco, of the other part (‘the Association Agreement’).

(4)

In a spirit of partnership and in order to allow the parties to assess the impact of the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters, in particular on sustainable development and with regard to the advantages for the people concerned and the exploitation of the natural resources of the territories in question, the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco have agreed to exchange information at least once a year by means of the Association Committee.

(5)

The specific arrangements for the evaluation exercise are to be adopted by the Association Committee,

HAS ADOPTED THIS DECISION:

Article 1

1.   In a spirit of partnership and in order to allow the parties to assess the impact of the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters during its application from a sustainable development perspective, the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco have agreed to exchange information by means of the Association Committee on an annual basis.

2.   The European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco shall exchange data considered relevant in the main areas of activity concerned as well as statistical, economic, social and environmental information, in particular with regard to the advantages of the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters for the people concerned and the exploitation of the natural resources of the territories in question. A list of relevant information is set out in the Annex to this Decision.

The exchange shall be based on a prior written communication sent by the end of March each year; the communication may be followed by requests for clarification and supplementary questions raised in the subject areas covered by this Decision. Responses shall be provided by the end of June each year.

3.   In a spirit of partnership and in order to allow them to assess the impact of the Agreement the form of an Exchange of Letters, the parties have also agreed that the Kingdom of Morocco may, on the basis of existing information systems, ask the European Union for information on production and trade in specific product categories of particular interest to the Kingdom of Morocco.

For this purpose, the Kingdom of Morocco shall send its request in writing to the European Union by the end of March each year; the communication may be followed by requests for clarification and supplementary questions. Responses shall be provided by the end of June each year.

4.   The parties shall take note of those exchanges within the Association Committee once a year.

5.   The minutes, including the Association Committee’s conclusions, shall be approved by the parties by the end of the month following that in which the meeting takes place.

Article 2

The Annex shall form an integral part of this Decision.

Article 3

This Decision shall enter into force on the date of its adoption.

Done at Brussels, 16 March 2020.

For the EU-Kingdom of Morocco

Association Committee

R. GILI


ANNEX

RELEVANT INFORMATION FOR THE PURPOSES OF THE EXCHANGE OF INFORMATION PROVIDED FOR IN THE AGREEMENT IN THE FORM OF AN EXCHANGE OF LETTERS

The information exchanged is to be used to update the joint report of 11 June 2018 by the Commission and the European External Action Service (EEAS) (1). The exchange of information is therefore to include detailed information that allows for the impact of the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters to be evaluated during its implementation, including general information on the territories and people concerned. This information is intended solely for the purposes of evaluation and the updating of the report by the Commission and the EEAS. The following are examples of relevant information:

1.

Information provided by the Kingdom of Morocco:

(a)

General information:

*

Socioeconomic and environmental statistics.

(b)

Information on the main export sectors of the economy:

*

production by type of product;

*

the area farmed and the volume harvested;

*

exports to the European Union in terms of volume and value;

*

economic activities of local operators related to the sectors covered by the Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters, and employment generated;

*

sustainable management of resources;

*

production establishments.

2.

Information provided by the EU:

Information on trade in products exported to the Kingdom of Morocco by customs code and in terms of volume and value, as well as, where such data are available, on the production of specific products.

3.

Other relevant information:

As stated in the correspondence exchanged by the European Commission and the Mission of the Kingdom of Morocco to the European Union on 6 December 2018, the Kingdom of Morocco is setting up a mechanism for collecting information on exports covered by the Association Agreement, as amended by the Exchange of Letters, which will systematically and regularly provide and make available each month precise data so that the European Union has transparent and reliable information on the origin of these exports to the Union, by region (2). The European Commission will have direct access to such data and will share them with the customs authorities of the Member States of the European Union.

For its part, the Kingdom of Morocco will have transparent and reliable statistical information on exports from the European Union to the Kingdom of Morocco.


(1)  ‘Report on benefits for the people of Western Sahara and public consultation on extending tariff preferences to products from Western Sahara’ of 11 June 2018 (SWD (2018) 346 final).

(2)  NB: This mechanism has been operational since 1 October 2019.