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Moroccan, Canadian Tourism Ministries Push for Direct Flights

Moroccan tourism minister Mohamed Sajid and a Canadian parliamentary assistant to the premier, Samuel Poulin, agreed tourism ties need a fresh dynamic.

13 Mar 2019

Rabat – Moroccan Minister of Tourism, Air Transport, Crafts, and Social Economy Mohamed Sajid held talks with Samuel Poulin, Canadian parliamentary assistant to the minister of tourism, on Monday in Rabat to discuss tourism.

The meeting confirmed ongoing efforts to set up direct flights between Moroccan cities and Quebec. Sajid stressed the need for direct flights to expand tourist traffic, especially for Moroccans living in Canada.

Montreal and Casablanca are connected with two daily non-stop flights, operated by Air Canada and Royal Air Maroc. The two companies said in August 2018 that they will each serve two flights a day staring in the summer of 2019.

The two sides also agreed to improve cooperation in professional hotel training and tourism in general.

The minister also said it was important to reopen the office of the Moroccan National Tourist Office in Montreal to promote Morocco as a destination for Canadian tourists.

“Reopening this office later this year will help instill a new dynamic among tourism operators in both countries to promote both destinations,” said Sajid.

He added that his ministry was willing to organize various activities in Canada centered on Moroccan tourism, cuisine, and crafts.

Poulin echoed the need to promote tourism, air transport cooperation and direct flights.

The Quebec government announced the plan to open a representative office in Rabat in June 2018.

While Morocco was Canada’s 55th bilateral trade partner in 2016, the country has close ties with Quebec Province with many years of bilateral relations, cooperation, and immigration.

Morocco has a consulate and in Montreal, the largest city in Quebec.

Morocco is regularly listed among the five countries that send the most immigrants to Quebec. The province had a relatively large Moroccan community of over 73,000 people in 2016.

Some members of Quebec’s Moroccan community have also risen in the political scene in Canada.

In January, Moroccan Nizar Berdai, who moved to Canada in 2015, became a member of the Youth Parliament of Quebec. Berdai said he had plans to advance the interests of the Moroccan community in Canada.

Moncef Derraji and Marwah Rizqy, two Canadians of Moroccan descent, both living in Quebec, were elected to the Canadian Parliament in Canada’s latest provincial elections in October.

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