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"ASEAN Forum at AUI: Strengthening Morocco's Partnership with ASEAN"

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The Association Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Committee in Rabat (ACR), since its establishment in 2015, has been implementing projects and programs to strengthen the relations between ASEAN and Morocco, enhance ASEAN’s presence in Morocco, and to increase Morocco’s awareness of ASEAN as a model of regional organization. As the current Chairperson of the ACR, the Philippine Embassy hopes to contribute to this objective by organizing a number of activities, one of which is the ASEAN Forum. The ASEAN Forum, organized by the ACR in partnership with one of the leading universities in Morocco – Al Akhawayn University, will provide participants with an overview on ASEAN, the three pillars that govern the priorities for regional cooperation, and the Practical Areas of Cooperation between Morocco and ASEAN within the context of Morocco's status as a Sectoral Dialogue Partner (SDP). The target participants are undergraduate students from the School of Humanities and Social Sciences and graduate students from the International Studies and Diplomacy Program. As part of its strategic vision to diversify and consolidate its partnership at all levels, Morocco is driven by a firm will to participate in the Asia-oriented economic geo-strategic architecture of the world and has a strong ambition to initiate a comprehensive and fruitful dialogue with ASEAN. Recognizing the strategic importance of ASEAN, Morocco signed the instrument of accession to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation (TAC) with ASEAN in September 2016 at the sidelines of the 28th and 29th ASEAN Summits in Vientiane, Laos. To further strengthen the engagement between Morocco and ASEAN, Morocco submitted its bid to become a Sectoral Dialogue Partner (SDP) in 2018, and in January 2023, renewed its commitment to become an SDP by submitting an Updated Action Plan on the Practical Areas of Cooperation (PCA) for the period 2023 to 2025. After careful review of Morocco’s proposal, the ASEAN Foreign Ministers conferred the status of SDP to Morocco at the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting held on 4 September 2023 in Jakarta, Indonesia. The PCA aims to implement future cooperation under the framework of the ASEAN-Morocco Sectoral Dialogue Partnership to further substantiate the Partnership and cooperation with a focus on sectors where ASEAN and Morocco have the expertise and mutual interests. The PCA will also contribute to the realization of the goals of the ASEAN Community Vision 2025, as well as further strengthen ASEAN-Morocco relations. More details on the PCA will be discussed during the forum.