BETA


2018/0256(NLE) EC/Morocco Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreement: products originating in Western Sahara (amend. Protocols 1 and 2)

Progress: Procedure completed

RoleCommitteeRapporteurShadows
Lead INTA SCHAAKE Marietje (icon: ALDE ALDE) CICU Salvatore (icon: PPE PPE), LOONES Sander (icon: ECR ECR), LE HYARIC Patrick (icon: GUE/NGL GUE/NGL), JADOT Yannick (icon: Verts/ALE Verts/ALE), BEGHIN Tiziana (icon: EFDD EFDD)
Committee Opinion AFET VISTISEN Anders Primdahl (icon: ECR ECR) Gilles PARGNEAUX (icon: S&D S&D), Cristian Dan PREDA (icon: PPE PPE), Bodil VALERO (icon: Verts/ALE Verts/ALE)
Committee Opinion AGRI DANTIN Michel (icon: PPE PPE) José BOVÉ (icon: Verts/ALE Verts/ALE), Jørn DOHRMANN (icon: ECR ECR), Maria Lidia SENRA RODRÍGUEZ (icon: GUE/NGL GUE/NGL)
Committee Opinion PECH
Lead committee dossier:
Legal Basis:
TFEU 207-p4, TFEU 218-p6a

Events

2019/02/06
   Final act published in Official Journal
Details

PURPOSE: to approve the conclusion of 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.

NON-LEGISLATIVE ACT: Council Decision (EU) 2019/217 on the conclusion of 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.

CONTENT: the Council approved, on behalf of the Union, 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 Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreement between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Kingdom of Morocco, of the other part, entered into force on 1 March 2000. Since the entry into force of the Association Agreement, products originating in Western Sahara and certified as being of Moroccan origin have been imported into the Union under the tariff preferences provided for in the relevant provisions of the Agreement.

However, in its judgment of 21 December 2016 in Case C-104/16 P ( Conseil/Front Polisario ), the Court of Justice specified that the Association Agreement covered the territory of the Kingdom of Morocco alone and not Western Sahara, which is a non-self-governing territory.

On 29 May 2017, the Council authorised the Commission to open negotiations with the Kingdom of Morocco with a view to establishing, in accordance with the judgment of the Court of Justice, a legal basis to grant the tariff preferences laid down in the Association Agreement to products originating in Western Sahara.

After the Commission's assessment of the potential impact of an agreement between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco, it was considered that the extension of tariff preferences to products originating in Western Sahara will have an overall positive impact on the populations concerned.

This Decision amends Protocol 4 and Protocol 1 of the EU-Morocco Association Agreement with a view to respecting the obligations of the Court judgment of 21 December 2016 and providing a legal basis for granting preferences to products from Western Sahara.

It should be noted that the Union does not prejudge the outcome of the United Nations' political process on the final status of Western Sahara and, has consistently reaffirmed its commitment to resolving the dispute in Western Sahara, presently listed by the United Nations as a non-self-governing territory, large parts of which are currently administered by the Kingdom of Morocco.

ENTRY INTO FORCE: 7.2.2019.

2019/01/28
   EP/CSL - Act adopted by Council after consultation of Parliament
2019/01/28
   EP - End of procedure in Parliament
2019/01/28
   CSL - Council Meeting
2019/01/16
   EP - Results of vote in Parliament
2019/01/16
   EP - Decision by Parliament, 1st reading/single reading
Details

The European Parliament adopted by 444 votes to 167, with 68 abstentions, a legislative resolution on the draft Council decision on the conclusion of 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.

Parliament gave its consent to the conclusion of the agreement.

Documents
2018/12/18
   EP - Committee report tabled for plenary, 1st reading/single reading
Details

The Committee on International Trade adopted the recommendation by Marietje SCHAAKE (ALDE, NL) on the draft Council decision on the conclusion of 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 committee recommended that the European Parliament give its consent to the conclusion of the agreement.

As a reminder, the aim of the proposal is to avoid disrupting trade with Western Sahara while maintaining access to the EU market at a stable level, since no new preferences are being granted. In particular, it aims to foster the economic development of Western Sahara by treating its exports to the EU the same as exports of products of Moroccan origin. These measures will prevent Western Sahara suffering a competitive disadvantage and missing out on investment opportunities compared with neighbouring countries, which benefit from tariff preferences on different grounds (association agreements or the Generalised System of Preferences).

Documents
2018/12/10
   EP - Vote in committee, 1st reading/single reading
2018/12/10
   EP - SCHAAKE Marietje (ALDE) appointed as rapporteur in INTA
2018/11/29
   EP - Committee opinion
Documents
2018/11/21
   EP - Committee opinion
Documents
2018/11/12
   EP - Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading
2018/11/09
   EP - Amendments tabled in committee
Documents
2018/09/19
   EP - Committee draft report
Documents
2018/09/05
   EP - VISTISEN Anders Primdahl (ECR) appointed as rapporteur in AFET
2018/08/21
   EP - DANTIN Michel (PPE) appointed as rapporteur in AGRI
2018/07/10
   EC - Legislative proposal published
Details

PURPOSE: to conclude, on behalf of the Union, the agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the EU and 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 Morocco, of the other part.

PROPOSED ACT: Council Decision.

ROLE OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT: Council may adopt the act only if Parliament has given its consent to the act.

BACKGROUND: the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an Association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and Morocco, of the other part entered into force on 1 March 2000.

Since the Association Agreement came into force, products from Western Sahara certified to be of Moroccan origin have been imported to the Union, benefiting from the tariff preferences laid down in its relevant provisions.

In its judgment of 21 December 2016, the Court of Justice specified that the Association Agreement covered the territory of the Kingdom of Morocco alone and not Western Sahara, which is a non-self-governing territory.

On 29 May 2017, the Council authorised the Commission to open negotiations with the Kingdom of Morocco with a view to establishing, in accordance with the judgment of the Court of Justice, a legal basis to grant the tariff preferences laid down in the Association Agreement to products originating in Western Sahara. An agreement between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco is the only means of ensuring that the import of products originating in Western Sahara benefits from preferential origin, given that only the Moroccan authorities are able to ensure compliance with the rules necessary for the granting of such preferences.

It has been assessed that the extension of tariff preferences to products originating in Western Sahara will have a positive overall effect for the people concerned. The existence in Western Sahara of economic and production activities that would benefit greatly from the tariff preferences laid down in the Association Agreement shows that failure to grant tariff preferences would significantly jeopardise exports from Western Sahara, especially those of fishery and agricultural products.

It is assessed that by stimulating investment, the granting of tariff preferences should also have a positive impact on the development of Western Sahara’s economy.

Having regard to the considerations on consent in the ruling of the Court of Justice, the Commission, in liaison with the European External Action Service, has taken all reasonable and feasible steps in the current context to adequately involve the people concerned in order to ascertain their consent to the agreement.

The text of the Agreement does not imply that it recognises Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara. The Union will also continue to step up its efforts in support of the process, initiated and pursued through the United Nations, working towards a peaceful resolution of the dispute.

CONTENT: the draft Council Decision seeks, on behalf of the Union, to approve the Agr eement 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.

This draft Decision seeks to apply amendments to Protocol 4 and Protocol 1 of the EU-Morocco Association Agreement with a view to respecting the obligations of the Court judgment of 21 December 2016 and providing a legal basis for granting preferences to products from Western Sahara.

Documents
2018/06/11
   EC - Document attached to the procedure
2018/06/11
   EC - Document attached to the procedure
2018/06/11
   EP - Preparatory document
Details

PURPOSE: to conclude, on behalf of the Union, the agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the EU and 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 Morocco, of the other part.

PROPOSED ACT: Council Decision.

ROLE OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT: Council may adopt the act only if Parliament has given its consent to the act.

BACKGROUND: the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an Association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and Morocco, of the other part entered into force on 1 March 2000.

Liberalisation measures on agricultural products, processed agricultural products, fish and fishery products were introduced into the Association Agreement by an Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco (the Liberalisation Agreement), which entered into force in 2012.

Since the Association Agreement entered into force, the Union has continued to strengthen its bilateral relations with Morocco and awarded it advanced status in 2008 which enshrines the strength of the bilateral links between the parties and their shared ambitions and commitments with a view to the advancement of their joint initiatives, such as good governance and political and socio-economic reforms.

At the same time, the Union has consistently reaffirmed its commitment to resolving the dispute in Western Sahara. Although it has not recognised Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara, it fully supports the efforts made by the United Nations Secretary-General and his personal envoy to help the parties reach a fair, lasting and mutually-acceptable political solution that would ensure the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara under agreements aligned with the principles and objectives of the Charter of the United Nations, as set out in the Resolutions of the UN Security Council, in particular Resolutions 2152 (2014) and 2218 (2015).

In its judgment of 21 December 2016 in Case C-104/16 P3, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that the Association Agreement and the Liberalisation Agreement between the Union and Morocco did not apply to Western Sahara.

Following the Court judgment, the practice of applying the trade preferences set out in the Association Agreement and its protocols on a de facto basis to products originating in Western Sahara, a non-self-governing territory, could not continue, unless Protocol 1 (access to the EU market for Moroccan agricultural products, processed agricultural products, fish and fishery products) and Protocol 4 (concerning rules of origin) were amended to establish that products originating in Western Sahara should be treated in the same way as those from Morocco.

On 29 May 2017, the Council authorised the Commission to open negotiations with Morocco with a view to establishing a legal basis to grant the tariff preferences laid down in the Association Agreement to products originating in Western Sahara.

An agreement between the EU and Morocco is the only means of ensuring that the import of products originating in Western Sahara benefits from preferential origin, given that only the Moroccan authorities are able to ensure compliance with the rules necessary for the granting of such preferences.

CONTENT: the present proposal calls on the Council to adopt the decision to approve, on behalf of the Union, 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.

This proposal applies amendments to Protocol 4 and Protocol 1 of the EU-Morocco Association Agreement with a view to respecting the obligations of the Court judgment of 21 December 2016 and providing a legal basis for granting preferences to products from Western Sahara.

The aim of the proposal is to:

avoid disrupting trade with Western Sahara while maintaining access to the EU market at a stable level, since no new preferences are being granted; foster the economic development of Western Sahara by treating its exports to the EU the same as exports of products of Moroccan origin.

These measures will prevent Western Sahara suffering a competitive disadvantage and missing out on investment opportunities compared with neighbouring countries, which benefit from tariff preferences on different grounds (association agreements or the Generalised System of Preferences).

Lastly, it should be emphasised that the judgment delivered by the Court of Justice on 27 February 2018 in Case C-266/16 relates to the partnership agreement between the EU and Morocco in the fishing industry. This is a separate issue from the matter of market access, which is covered by the Association Agreement and therefore this proposal.

Any agreement is understood to be purely provisional, pending the resolution of the dispute through the UN and in accordance with the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council. On this point, the Agreement states that it is concluded without prejudice to the respective positions of the European Union and Morocco with regard to the status of Western Sahara.

Documents

Documents

Votes

A8-0471/2018 - Marietje Schaake - Approbation

2019/01/16 Outcome: +: 444, -: 167, 0: 68
PL FR RO IT ES DE BG HU CZ BE HR PT SK EE SI MT LT LV FI LU DK EL ?? IE NL AT CY SE GB
Total
50
67
25
63
50
86
16
17
21
21
10
20
13
6
8
6
9
6
11
5
10
18
1
9
25
17
5
20
62
icon: PPE PPE
201

Estonia PPE

For (1)

1

Finland PPE

For (1)

Abstain (1)

2

Luxembourg PPE

Abstain (1)

2

Cyprus PPE

Abstain (1)

1

United Kingdom PPE

2
icon: ECR ECR
67

Romania ECR

2

Bulgaria ECR

2

Czechia ECR

2

Croatia ECR

For (1)

1

Lithuania ECR

1

Finland ECR

For (1)

1

Greece ECR

Against (1)

1

Netherlands ECR

For (1)

1

Cyprus ECR

Abstain (1)

1

Sweden ECR

2
icon: ALDE ALDE
64

Romania ALDE

2

Croatia ALDE

2

Portugal ALDE

1

Estonia ALDE

3

Slovenia ALDE

For (1)

1

Lithuania ALDE

1

Latvia ALDE

1

Luxembourg ALDE

For (1)

1

Denmark ALDE

3

Austria ALDE

Abstain (1)

1

Sweden ALDE

Abstain (1)

3

United Kingdom ALDE

Abstain (1)

1
icon: S&D S&D
168
4

Belgium S&D

4

Croatia S&D

2

Slovakia S&D

4

Estonia S&D

For (1)

1

Slovenia S&D

Against (1)

1

Malta S&D

3

Lithuania S&D

Against (1)

2

Latvia S&D

1

Luxembourg S&D

For (1)

1

Denmark S&D

2

Ireland S&D

For (1)

1

Netherlands S&D

3

Austria S&D

Abstain (1)

4

Cyprus S&D

1
icon: EFDD EFDD
34

Poland EFDD

1

Germany EFDD

Abstain (1)

1

Czechia EFDD

Against (1)

1

Lithuania EFDD

For (1)

1
icon: ENF ENF
30

Poland ENF

2

Germany ENF

Abstain (1)

1

Belgium ENF

Against (1)

1

Netherlands ENF

4

United Kingdom ENF

4
icon: NI NI
18

France NI

Against (1)

3

Romania NI

1

Germany NI

2

Hungary NI

Against (1)

1

NI

For (1)

1

United Kingdom NI

For (1)

Against (1)

2
icon: Verts/ALE Verts/ALE
51

France Verts/ALE

6

Italy Verts/ALE

For (1)

1

Hungary Verts/ALE

For (1)

1

Belgium Verts/ALE

For (1)

Against (1)

2

Croatia Verts/ALE

For (1)

1

Estonia Verts/ALE

For (1)

1

Slovenia Verts/ALE

For (1)

1

Lithuania Verts/ALE

Against (1)

1

Latvia Verts/ALE

Against (1)

1

Finland Verts/ALE

Against (1)

1

Luxembourg Verts/ALE

Against (1)

1

Denmark Verts/ALE

Against (1)

1

Netherlands Verts/ALE

Against (1)

2

Austria Verts/ALE

3

United Kingdom Verts/ALE

6
icon: GUE/NGL GUE/NGL
44

Italy GUE/NGL

2

Finland GUE/NGL

Against (1)

1

Denmark GUE/NGL

Against (1)

1
4

Netherlands GUE/NGL

3

Cyprus GUE/NGL

2

Sweden GUE/NGL

Against (1)

1

United Kingdom GUE/NGL

Against (1)

1
AmendmentsDossier
9 2018/0256(NLE)
2018/11/07 INTA 8 amendments...
source: 630.405
2018/11/14 AFET 1 amendments...
source: 629.611

History

(these mark the time of scraping, not the official date of the change)

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events
  • date: 2018-06-11T00:00:00 type: Initial legislative proposal published body: EC docs: title: COM(2018)0481 summary: PURPOSE: to conclude, on behalf of the Union, the agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the EU and 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 Morocco, of the other part. PROPOSED ACT: Council Decision. ROLE OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT: Council may adopt the act only if Parliament has given its consent to the act. BACKGROUND: the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an Association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and Morocco, of the other part entered into force on 1 March 2000. Liberalisation measures on agricultural products, processed agricultural products, fish and fishery products were introduced into the Association Agreement by an Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco (the Liberalisation Agreement), which entered into force in 2012. Since the Association Agreement entered into force, the Union has continued to strengthen its bilateral relations with Morocco and awarded it advanced status in 2008 which enshrines the strength of the bilateral links between the parties and their shared ambitions and commitments with a view to the advancement of their joint initiatives, such as good governance and political and socio-economic reforms. At the same time, the Union has consistently reaffirmed its commitment to resolving the dispute in Western Sahara. Although it has not recognised Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara, it fully supports the efforts made by the United Nations Secretary-General and his personal envoy to help the parties reach a fair, lasting and mutually-acceptable political solution that would ensure the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara under agreements aligned with the principles and objectives of the Charter of the United Nations, as set out in the Resolutions of the UN Security Council, in particular Resolutions 2152 (2014) and 2218 (2015). In its judgment of 21 December 2016 in Case C-104/16 P3, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that the Association Agreement and the Liberalisation Agreement between the Union and Morocco did not apply to Western Sahara. Following the Court judgment, the practice of applying the trade preferences set out in the Association Agreement and its protocols on a de facto basis to products originating in Western Sahara, a non-self-governing territory, could not continue, unless Protocol 1 (access to the EU market for Moroccan agricultural products, processed agricultural products, fish and fishery products) and Protocol 4 (concerning rules of origin) were amended to establish that products originating in Western Sahara should be treated in the same way as those from Morocco. On 29 May 2017, the Council authorised the Commission to open negotiations with Morocco with a view to establishing a legal basis to grant the tariff preferences laid down in the Association Agreement to products originating in Western Sahara. An agreement between the EU and Morocco is the only means of ensuring that the import of products originating in Western Sahara benefits from preferential origin, given that only the Moroccan authorities are able to ensure compliance with the rules necessary for the granting of such preferences. CONTENT: the present proposal calls on the Council to adopt the decision to approve, on behalf of the Union, 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. This proposal applies amendments to Protocol 4 and Protocol 1 of the EU-Morocco Association Agreement with a view to respecting the obligations of the Court judgment of 21 December 2016 and providing a legal basis for granting preferences to products from Western Sahara. The aim of the proposal is to: avoid disrupting trade with Western Sahara while maintaining access to the EU market at a stable level, since no new preferences are being granted; foster the economic development of Western Sahara by treating its exports to the EU the same as exports of products of Moroccan origin. These measures will prevent Western Sahara suffering a competitive disadvantage and missing out on investment opportunities compared with neighbouring countries, which benefit from tariff preferences on different grounds (association agreements or the Generalised System of Preferences). Lastly, it should be emphasised that the judgment delivered by the Court of Justice on 27 February 2018 in Case C-266/16 relates to the partnership agreement between the EU and Morocco in the fishing industry. This is a separate issue from the matter of market access, which is covered by the Association Agreement and therefore this proposal. Any agreement is understood to be purely provisional, pending the resolution of the dispute through the UN and in accordance with the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council. On this point, the Agreement states that it is concluded without prejudice to the respective positions of the European Union and Morocco with regard to the status of Western Sahara.
  • date: 2018-07-10T00:00:00 type: Legislative proposal published body: EC docs: url: http://register.consilium.europa.eu/content/out?lang=EN&typ=SET&i=ADV&RESULTSET=1&DOC_ID=10593%2F18&DOC_LANCD=EN&ROWSPP=25&NRROWS=500&ORDERBY=DOC_DATE+DESC title: 10593/2018 summary: PURPOSE: to conclude, on behalf of the Union, the agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the EU and 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 Morocco, of the other part. PROPOSED ACT: Council Decision. ROLE OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT: Council may adopt the act only if Parliament has given its consent to the act. BACKGROUND: the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an Association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and Morocco, of the other part entered into force on 1 March 2000. Since the Association Agreement came into force, products from Western Sahara certified to be of Moroccan origin have been imported to the Union, benefiting from the tariff preferences laid down in its relevant provisions. In its judgment of 21 December 2016, the Court of Justice specified that the Association Agreement covered the territory of the Kingdom of Morocco alone and not Western Sahara, which is a non-self-governing territory. On 29 May 2017, the Council authorised the Commission to open negotiations with the Kingdom of Morocco with a view to establishing, in accordance with the judgment of the Court of Justice, a legal basis to grant the tariff preferences laid down in the Association Agreement to products originating in Western Sahara. An agreement between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco is the only means of ensuring that the import of products originating in Western Sahara benefits from preferential origin, given that only the Moroccan authorities are able to ensure compliance with the rules necessary for the granting of such preferences. It has been assessed that the extension of tariff preferences to products originating in Western Sahara will have a positive overall effect for the people concerned. The existence in Western Sahara of economic and production activities that would benefit greatly from the tariff preferences laid down in the Association Agreement shows that failure to grant tariff preferences would significantly jeopardise exports from Western Sahara, especially those of fishery and agricultural products. It is assessed that by stimulating investment, the granting of tariff preferences should also have a positive impact on the development of Western Sahara’s economy. Having regard to the considerations on consent in the ruling of the Court of Justice, the Commission, in liaison with the European External Action Service, has taken all reasonable and feasible steps in the current context to adequately involve the people concerned in order to ascertain their consent to the agreement. The text of the Agreement does not imply that it recognises Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara. The Union will also continue to step up its efforts in support of the process, initiated and pursued through the United Nations, working towards a peaceful resolution of the dispute. CONTENT: the draft Council Decision seeks, on behalf of the Union, to approve the Agr eement 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. This draft Decision seeks to apply amendments to Protocol 4 and Protocol 1 of the EU-Morocco Association Agreement with a view to respecting the obligations of the Court judgment of 21 December 2016 and providing a legal basis for granting preferences to products from Western Sahara.
  • date: 2018-11-12T00:00:00 type: Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading body: EP
  • date: 2018-12-10T00:00:00 type: Vote in committee, 1st reading/single reading body: EP
  • date: 2018-12-18T00:00:00 type: Committee report tabled for plenary, 1st reading/single reading body: EP docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=REPORT&mode=XML&reference=A8-2018-0471&language=EN title: A8-0471/2018 summary: The Committee on International Trade adopted the recommendation by Marietje SCHAAKE (ALDE, NL) on the draft Council decision on the conclusion of 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 committee recommended that the European Parliament give its consent to the conclusion of the agreement. As a reminder, the aim of the proposal is to avoid disrupting trade with Western Sahara while maintaining access to the EU market at a stable level, since no new preferences are being granted. In particular, it aims to foster the economic development of Western Sahara by treating its exports to the EU the same as exports of products of Moroccan origin. These measures will prevent Western Sahara suffering a competitive disadvantage and missing out on investment opportunities compared with neighbouring countries, which benefit from tariff preferences on different grounds (association agreements or the Generalised System of Preferences).
  • date: 2019-01-16T00:00:00 type: Decision by Parliament, 1st reading/single reading body: EP docs: url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=TA&language=EN&reference=P8-TA-2019-0017 title: T8-0017/2019 summary: The European Parliament adopted by 444 votes to 167, with 68 abstentions, a legislative resolution on the draft Council decision on the conclusion of 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. Parliament gave its consent to the conclusion of the agreement.
  • date: 2019-01-28T00:00:00 type: Act adopted by Council after consultation of Parliament body: EP/CSL
  • date: 2019-01-28T00:00:00 type: End of procedure in Parliament body: EP
  • date: 2019-02-06T00:00:00 type: Final act published in Official Journal summary: PURPOSE: to approve the conclusion of 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. NON-LEGISLATIVE ACT: Council Decision (EU) 2019/217 on the conclusion of 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. CONTENT: the Council approved, on behalf of the Union, 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 Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreement between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Kingdom of Morocco, of the other part, entered into force on 1 March 2000. Since the entry into force of the Association Agreement, products originating in Western Sahara and certified as being of Moroccan origin have been imported into the Union under the tariff preferences provided for in the relevant provisions of the Agreement. However, in its judgment of 21 December 2016 in Case C-104/16 P ( Conseil/Front Polisario ), the Court of Justice specified that the Association Agreement covered the territory of the Kingdom of Morocco alone and not Western Sahara, which is a non-self-governing territory. On 29 May 2017, the Council authorised the Commission to open negotiations with the Kingdom of Morocco with a view to establishing, in accordance with the judgment of the Court of Justice, a legal basis to grant the tariff preferences laid down in the Association Agreement to products originating in Western Sahara. After the Commission's assessment of the potential impact of an agreement between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco, it was considered that the extension of tariff preferences to products originating in Western Sahara will have an overall positive impact on the populations concerned. This Decision amends Protocol 4 and Protocol 1 of the EU-Morocco Association Agreement with a view to respecting the obligations of the Court judgment of 21 December 2016 and providing a legal basis for granting preferences to products from Western Sahara. It should be noted that the Union does not prejudge the outcome of the United Nations' political process on the final status of Western Sahara and, has consistently reaffirmed its commitment to resolving the dispute in Western Sahara, presently listed by the United Nations as a non-self-governing territory, large parts of which are currently administered by the Kingdom of Morocco. ENTRY INTO FORCE: 7.2.2019. docs: title: Decision 2019/217 url: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexplus!prod!CELEXnumdoc&lg=EN&numdoc=32019D0217 title: OJ L 034 06.02.2019, p. 0001 url: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=OJ:L:2019:034:TOC
links
other
  • body: EC dg: url: http://ec.europa.eu/info/departments/taxation-and-customs-union_en title: Taxation and Customs Union commissioner: MOSCOVICI Pierre
procedure/dossier_of_the_committee
  • INTA/8/13678
procedure/final
title
Decision 2019/217
url
https://eur-lex.europa.eu/smartapi/cgi/sga_doc?smartapi!celexplus!prod!CELEXnumdoc&lg=EN&numdoc=32019D0217
procedure/instrument
  • Decision
  • See also 1995/0363(AVC)
procedure/stage_reached
Old
Preparatory phase in Parliament
New
Procedure completed
procedure/subject
Old
  • 3.10.03 Marketing and trade of agricultural products and livestock
  • 3.15.06 Fishing industry and statistics, fishery products
  • 6.20.03 Bilateral economic and trade agreements and relations
  • 6.20.04 Union Customs Code, tariffs, preferential arrangements, rules of origin
  • 6.40.05.02 Relations with the countries of the Great Maghreb and Maghreb
New
6.20.03
Bilateral economic and trade agreements and relations
6.20.04
Union Customs Code, tariffs, preferential arrangements, rules of origin
6.40.05.02
Relations with the countries of the Great Maghreb and Maghreb
procedure/summary
  • Accompanying procedure
  • See also
procedure/title
Old
EC/Morocco Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreement: products originating in Western Sahara
New
EC/Morocco Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreement: products originating in Western Sahara (amend. Protocols 1 and 2)
activities/1
date
2018-12-03T00:00:00
body
EP
type
Vote scheduled in committee, 1st reading/single reading
activities/2
date
2019-01-15T00:00:00
body
EP
type
Indicative plenary sitting date, 1st reading/single reading
committees/0/date
2018-09-05T00:00:00
committees/0/rapporteur
  • group: ECR name: VISTISEN Anders Primdahl
committees/1/date
2018-08-21T00:00:00
committees/1/rapporteur
  • group: EPP name: DANTIN Michel
committees/2/shadows
  • group: EPP name: CICU Salvatore
  • group: S&D name: MAUREL Emmanuel
  • group: ECR name: LOONES Sander
  • group: GUE/NGL name: LE HYARIC Patrick
  • group: Verts/ALE name: JADOT Yannick
  • group: EFD name: BEGHIN Tiziana
activities/0/docs/0/text
  • PURPOSE: to conclude, on behalf of the Union, the agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the EU and 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 Morocco, of the other part.

    PROPOSED ACT: Council Decision.

    ROLE OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT: Council may adopt the act only if Parliament has given its consent to the act. 

    BACKGROUND: the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an Association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and Morocco, of the other part entered into force on 1 March 2000.

    Liberalisation measures on agricultural products, processed agricultural products, fish and fishery products were introduced into the Association Agreement by an Agreement in the form of an Exchange of Letters between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco (the Liberalisation Agreement), which entered into force in 2012.

    Since the Association Agreement entered into force, the Union has continued to strengthen its bilateral relations with Morocco and awarded it advanced status in 2008 which enshrines the strength of the bilateral links between the parties and their shared ambitions and commitments with a view to the advancement of their joint initiatives, such as good governance and political and socio-economic reforms.

    At the same time, the Union has consistently reaffirmed its commitment to resolving the dispute in Western Sahara. Although it has not recognised Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara, it fully supports the efforts made by the United Nations Secretary-General and his personal envoy to help the parties reach a fair, lasting and mutually-acceptable political solution that would ensure the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara under agreements aligned with the principles and objectives of the Charter of the United Nations, as set out in the Resolutions of the UN Security Council, in particular Resolutions 2152 (2014) and 2218 (2015).

    In its judgment of 21 December 2016 in Case C-104/16 P3, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that the Association Agreement and the Liberalisation Agreement between the Union and Morocco did not apply to Western Sahara.

    Following the Court judgment, the practice of applying the trade preferences set out in the Association Agreement and its protocols on a de facto basis to products originating in Western Sahara, a non-self-governing territory, could not continue, unless Protocol 1 (access to the EU market for Moroccan agricultural products, processed agricultural products, fish and fishery products) and Protocol 4 (concerning rules of origin) were amended to establish that products originating in Western Sahara should be treated in the same way as those from Morocco.

    On 29 May 2017, the Council authorised the Commission to open negotiations with Morocco with a view to establishing a legal basis to grant the tariff preferences laid down in the Association Agreement to products originating in Western Sahara.

    An agreement between the EU and Morocco is the only means of ensuring that the import of products originating in Western Sahara benefits from preferential origin, given that only the Moroccan authorities are able to ensure compliance with the rules necessary for the granting of such preferences. 

    CONTENT: the present proposal calls on the Council to adopt the decision to approve, on behalf of the Union, 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.

    This proposal applies amendments to Protocol 4 and Protocol 1 of the EU-Morocco Association Agreement with a view to respecting the obligations of the Court judgment of 21 December 2016 and providing a legal basis for granting preferences to products from Western Sahara. 

    The aim of the proposal is to:

    • avoid disrupting trade with Western Sahara while maintaining access to the EU market at a stable level, since no new preferences are being granted;
    • foster the economic development of Western Sahara by treating its exports to the EU the same as exports of products of Moroccan origin.

    These measures will prevent Western Sahara suffering a competitive disadvantage and missing out on investment opportunities compared with neighbouring countries, which benefit from tariff preferences on different grounds (association agreements or the Generalised System of Preferences).

    Lastly, it should be emphasised that the judgment delivered by the Court of Justice on 27 February 2018 in Case C-266/16 relates to the partnership agreement between the EU and Morocco in the fishing industry. This is a separate issue from the matter of market access, which is covered by the Association Agreement and therefore this proposal. 

    Any agreement is understood to be purely provisional, pending the resolution of the dispute through the UN and in accordance with the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council. On this point, the Agreement states that it is concluded without prejudice to the respective positions of the European Union and Morocco with regard to the status of Western Sahara.

activities/0/commission/0
DG
Commissioner
MOSCOVICI Pierre
other/0
body
EC
dg
commissioner
MOSCOVICI Pierre
activities
  • date: 2018-06-11T00:00:00 docs: celexid: CELEX:52018PC0481:EN type: Legislative proposal published title: COM(2018)0481 body: EC commission: type: Legislative proposal published
committees
  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Foreign Affairs committee: AFET
  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Agriculture and Rural Development committee: AGRI
  • body: EP responsible: True committee: INTA date: 2018-06-20T00:00:00 committee_full: International Trade rapporteur: group: ALDE name: LALONDE Patricia
  • body: EP responsible: False committee_full: Fisheries committee: PECH
links
other
    procedure
    geographical_area
    reference
    2018/0256(NLE)
    title
    EC/Morocco Euro-Mediterranean Association Agreement: products originating in Western Sahara
    legal_basis
    stage_reached
    Preparatory phase in Parliament
    summary
    subtype
    Consent by Parliament
    type
    NLE - Non-legislative enactments
    subject