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EU-Morocco trade deal a tsunami for small farmers and workers on both sides of Mediterranean

Date

15 Feb 2012

Sections

Global Europe
Med & South

Accusing Commission and Council of closing their eyes to reality, Spanish GUE/NGL MEP Willy Meyer said the EU-Morocco trade deal will solely benefit European food giants and wealthy landowners in Morocco, such as the royal family.

 

"This will be a tsunami for small and medium producers on this and on the other side of the Mediterranean. Even after the Arab Spring you continue to close your eyes to reality" he said in the debate on proposals to liberalise EU-Morocco agricultural and fisheries trade. The deal is set to adversely affect small farmers, workers and the environment, both in the Southern Mediterranean and the EU, particularly in Spain, Portugal and France.

 

Meyer also raised objections to the legality of the agreement's inclusion of Western Sahara saying it was "yet another breach of international law" and asking Council and Commission representatives to "behave in a more dignified manner and in accordance with international law". In an unfinished decolonisation process, Morocco is occupying the territory of Western Sahara by force and illegally exploiting its natural resources.

 

Irish MEP Paul Murphy noted that "while the Commission has repeatedly claimed that this is a 'win-win' deal, it is in fact a 'win-win' for major European agro-business, a few major Moroccan conglomerates and in particular for the King of Morocco himself who owns 12,000 hectares of the most fertile land and will be the biggest beneficiary."

 

"It is a 'lose-lose' deal for small farmers, agricultural workers and fishermen, both in Europe and in Morocco" he said, pointing to the total disregard for basic trade union rights, the right to strike and even the right to join a trade union in the Moroccan agricultural sector.

 

GUE/NGL Press Contacts:
David Lundy +32 485 50 58 12

Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20

European United Left / Nordic Green Left
European Parliamentary Group
 

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