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Cablegate: Morocco Seeks to Join Oecd Declaration On

VZCZCXRO7128
PP RUEHTRO
DE RUEHRB #0807/01 2721717
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 291717Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY RABAT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0694
INFO RUCNMGH/MAGHREB COLLECTIVE
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 5179
RUEHCL/AMCONSUL CASABLANCA 4721
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC
RUEHLMC/MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE CORPORATION WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 RABAT 000807

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR NEA/MAG
TREASURY FOR OFFICE OF MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA
DOC FOR ITA (OFFICE OF MIDDLE EAST- N MASON)

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON EINV ETRD MO
SUBJECT: MOROCCO SEEKS TO JOIN OECD DECLARATION ON
INVESTMENT AND MULTILATERAL CORPORATIONS

RABAT 00000807 001.2 OF 002


1. (SBU) SUMMARY: Embassy received a diplomatic note from
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs seeking U.S. support for
Morocco's bid to join the OECD Declaration on Investment and
Multinational Enterprises. The note made the case that
Morocco has undertaken numerous steps in recent years to
improve its investment climate. Embassy believes that
Moroccan membership in the OECD Investment Declaration would
support the continuing economic and political reform process
and urges favorable consideration of Morocco's request. End
summary.

2. (SBU) Below is an informal Embassy translation of the
diplomatic note (from the French original):

18 SEPT. 2009

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation presents its
compliments to the Embassy of the United States of America
and has the honor to inform the Embassy that the Kingdom of
Morocco's proposal for membership in the OECD Declaration on
International Investment and Multinational Enterprises will
be considered in Paris on 6 October 2009 by the Investment
Committee of the Organization.

The choice of Morocco to adhere to the OECD Declaration on
International Investment and Multinational Enterprises is an
expression of the Kingdom's commitment to economic opening.
This decision is consistent with the dynamic of the reforms
launched by Morocco several years ago which argue for its
membership, in conformity with the principles of the OECD
Declaration on International Investment and Multinational
Enterprises.

The important policy reforms being undertaken by Morocco to
improve the investment climate, as well as Morocco's
irreversible choice to integrate into the global economy
plead in favor of the Moroccan candidacy:

- Adoption, since the beginning of the 1980s, of a liberal
policy of openness to the outside world.
- Conclusion of several free trade agreements with important
partners, which make Morocco one of the largest nodes of
world free areas.
- Signature of several international investment treaties,
including bilateral agreements on investment promotion and
protection, as well as conventions for the avoidance of
double taxation inspired by OECD and United Nations model
conventions.
- Considerable improvements introduced to harmonize the
investment environment and secure Morocco's commercial
relations. These have expanded the definition of investment
to grant national treatment and most favored nation status to
investors, ensured the complete convertibility of capital for
foreign investors, as well as the freedom to repatriate both
their profits and their invested capital, and given them the
possibility, in case of dispute with the host country, to
appeal to its domestic courts or international arbitration
(ICSID or the UNCITRAL ad-hoc tribunal).
- Acceleration of the liberalization process in several
strategic sectors, including telecommunications,
transportation, energy, and banking and finance.
- Improvements to the legal environment for business through
the implementation of new laws on industrial and commercial
property, a new Trade Code, Corporation Law, Customs Code,
Tax Code, Law on Competition and Prices, Labor Code,
Insurance and Procurement Codes. On the institutional level,
creation of Regional Investment Centers and strengthening of
the Investment Commission.
- Commitment by Morocco to building a democratic society:
creating a country of laws, respect for Human Rights.
- Ownership of the principles of good governance and
transparency at the public level as well as the corporate
level (deconcentration, decentralization, results-based
management, combating corruption, corporate governance).
- Engagement for human development (National Initiative for
Human Development).
- Promotion of the role of women (in society) and adoption of
principles of gender equity.

Implementing these reforms has led to a dramatic increase of
foreign investment flows to Morocco, which demonstrates its

RABAT 00000807 002.2 OF 002


increasing attractiveness. Moreover, Morocco is no longer
limited to receiving investment; several Moroccan enterprises
have already begun a significant international development
process.

Given the above and in virtue of the privileged relations
linking the Kingdom of Morocco and the United States of
America, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation
would appreciate it if the Embassy could intercede with the
appropriate U.S. authorities to support Morocco's membership
in the OECD Declaration on International Investment and
Multinational Enterprises, and avails itself of this
opportunity to renew to the Embassy of the United States of
America the assurances of its highest consideration.

3. (SBU) COMMENT: Embassy shares the Foreign Ministry's
assessment that Morocco's reform process has yielded
significant economic benefits and demonstrates a firm
commitment to integration into international commercial and
investment regimes. Post believes that Moroccan membership
in the OECD Declaration would encourage progress in improving
the investment climate (for example, further liberalization
of the foreign exchange regulations) and urges careful
consideration of Morocco's candidacy.


*****************************************
Visit Embassy Rabat's Classified Website;
http://www.intelink.sgov.gov/wiki/Portal:Moro cco
*****************************************

Millard

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