• Spain's news in English
 

Spanish King makes 'symbolic' Morocco visit

Published: 16 Jul 2013 10:08 GMT+02:00

The visit, at the invitation of King Mohammed VI, is the first by Juan Carlos outside Spain since he had back surgery in March, and is expected to reflect the close diplomatic ties between Rabat and Madrid.

The two monarchs are due to meet at a dinner banquet on Tuesday.

Also on Tuesday, businessmen from Spain and Morocco will meet to discuss ways of bolstering cooperation between the two countries.

Juan Carlos brought with him to Morocco top business executives, as well as the ministers of foreign affairs, the interior, justice, industry and development.

Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo said last week in Madrid the visit was "very symbolic on the political front in light of current developments" in the region and would also focus on economic issues.

Morocco's Deputy Foreign Minister Youssef Amrani praised relations between Morocco and Spain and expected Juan Carlos' visit to open new horizons in bilateral cooperation.

Some 800 Spanish firms operate in Morocco, and Spain was Morocco's first trading partner last year.

The severe crisis that has hit the Spanish economy has seen a noticeable rise in the flow of Spaniards heading to Morocco to live or search of work, experts say.

Official figures show that 2,660 Spaniards registered for social security in Morocco last year, but the numbers actually living and working in the country are believed to be much higher.

Find out about the Spaniards who are hoping to escape Spain's crisis by moving to Morocco.

Conversely, there are 783,137 Moroccans living in Spain according to a 2013 study carried out by Spanish Muslim peak group UCIDE. 

A total of 23,408 Moroccans arrived in Spain in 2012, figures from Spain's national statistics institute (INE) show.

Moroccans are also the third largest group of non-EU nationals living within the Union. There are some 1.9 million people from the North African country living in the EU according to March figures from EU stats body Eurostat.

Many of Spain's Moroccans are currently undertaking the traditional one-month long Islamic fast of Ramadan.

During this time, Muslims over the age of 14 do not eat, drink, have sexual relations or smoke from sunrise to sunset.

This fast is particularly difficult in summer when the daylight hours are long.

Pregnant women, the elderly, children under 14 and people working in jobs where there is a real risk of dehydration are not obliged to fast.

Spain's UCIDE on July 8th asked Spain's employers to be flexible about working hours for Muslims during Ramadan.

UCIDE President Riay Tatary also told Spaniards to visit a mosque and find out about the traditions of their Muslim neighbours. This would be a "symbol of integtration", he said. 

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.es)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
The rain in Spain falls mainly...everywhere
Flooding in Villarcayo, Burgos. Photo: Protección Civil Municipal Burgos (@pcivilburgos)

The rain in Spain falls mainly...everywhere

Much of Spain was on high alert on Thursday as parts of the country were battered by high winds, heavy rains and rising rivers. READ  

International Brigades honoured at Jarama
Photo: Curto de la Torre/AFP

International Brigades honoured at Jarama

Around 300 relatives of the volunteers who made up the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War have been marching to mark the anniversary of the Battle of Jarama. READ  

Corruption bigger worry than terrorism in Spain
Photo of Spanish flags: Shutterstock

Corruption bigger worry than terrorism in Spain

A new poll has found that Spaniards are much more concerned with unemployment and corruption than the threat of terrorism. READ  

It's official: Spanish economy is growing
The Spanish economy grew by 1.4 percent in 2014, according to new figures. Photo: Gerard Julien/AFP.

It's official: Spanish economy is growing

Spain's economy expanded by 1.4 percent in 2014, after five years of recession or no growth, the country's national statistics agency Ine said on Thursday, confirming a provisional figure published in late January. READ  

State of the nation debate
Opposition comes out top in debate poll
Pedro Sánchez meets Mariano Rajoy in Moncloa, July 2014. Photo: Javier Soriano / AFP

Opposition comes out top in debate poll

The head of the opposition Socialist party (PSOE) outshone Spanish Popular party Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, during the state of the nation debate, according to a poll published on Thursday. READ  

Kazakh dissent security chief wins Spain asylum

Kazakh dissent security chief wins Spain asylum

Spain's Supreme Court has ruled that a Kazakh dissident who rights groups warn would face torture if he returned to Kazakhstan has the right to asylum in Spain, according to a decision published Wednesday READ  

State of the nation debate
Podemos challenges Rajoy to TV debate
Pablo Iglesias, leader of Podemos issued the challenge to the PM on Wednesday Javier Soriano/AFP

Podemos challenges Rajoy to TV debate

The leader new anti-establishment party Podemos which is leading Spanish polls on Wednesday challenged conservative Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy to a television debate ahead of a series of elections. READ  

Court bans Catalan independence vote
Students demonstrating against the Constitutional Court decision to suspend the vote last October Lluis Gene / AFP

Court bans Catalan independence vote

Spain's Constitutional Court on Wednesday unanimously ruled that a referendum on secession called by the wealthy northeastern region of Catalonia in November was illegal, confirming an earlier decision to temporarily suspend the vote. READ  

The Local Video
Brooms up! Quidditch casts its spell over Spain
Photo: The Local

Brooms up! Quidditch casts its spell over Spain

Just when you thought Harry Potter fever had well and truly died down, students in Spain are breathing life into a sport that many thought could never leave the pages of the bestselling books. READ  

The Local list
Ten phrases you'll only hear at work in Spain

Ten phrases you'll only hear at work in Spain

Late breakfasts, long lunches, and remember to always blame the intern – Spanish office etiquette may not be quite what you are used to. Here's The Local's guide to the ten catchphrases all foreign workers need to know. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Brooms up! Quidditch casts its spell over Spain
Society
Ten phrases you'll only hear at work in Spain
International
Spanish crowned world's happiest language
National
Eight cool things the crisis did for Spain
National
There is joy in learning something new yourself'
Travel
Top Ten: Spain's best beaches for 2015
National
Euro property bargains up for grabs in Spain
What's On
Spain's craziest carnivals
National
Spanish town fights 'Fifty Shades' bondage hotel
Sponsored Article
Tourist or lifer: what sort of expat are you?
International
Vinnie Jones teaches Spanish in hilarious ad
What's On
Ten golden rules for snagging a Spanish man
Sponsored Article
Are you an American expat? How to face FATCA
National
Are these Spain's most romantic couples ever?
Property
House sales up for first year since crisis began
Gallery
The highs and lows of the Spanish property market
International
What's keeping UK expats from voting?
National
The five strangest things about Spaniards
Society
Bizarre Spanish fashions you shouldn't try at home
What's On
Top Spanish director to open Berlin Film Festival
National
Young and old, rich and poor join left-wing march
What's On
What's on in Spain: February 2015
International
Spain planned to invade Australia in 1790s
National
Spanish jobseekers fail exam with answers
National
Moving to Spain: a guide for beginners
National
Spain's new penal code: key talking points
International
Spain among Europe's cheapest nations: study
Features
Top ten surprising Spanish inventions
National
Court to study paternity suit against ex-king
National
Europe in statistics - from Spain to Sweden
National
Top ten: must-know Spanish superstitions
International
'Change Schengen rules to catch Islamists': Spain
What's On
Ten ways to spice up your Spanish life in 2015
Health
Spain tops world organ donation rankings
National
5 things no one tells you about renting in Spain
National
'No Pants Subway Ride' hits Madrid Metro
National
Spain's satirical mags back Charlie Hebdo
National
Finally: a Spanish PM bothers to visit Andorra
National
Woman fined for being kissed while driving
Travel
Top travel highlights in Spain for 2015
National
Gallery: Hits and misses of Antonio Banderas
National
Spain's top news in 2015: The Local's predictions
National
Spain's public holidays in 2015: Official list
National
Christmas fireball lights up Spanish skies
National
Top ten: Spain's biggest stories of 2014
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

559
jobs available