The report contains the outcome of a public consultation on the Bank's strategy for Morocco, a document identifying the Bank's priorities in its relation with the Moroccan government for the coming years. A consultative meeting with civil society groups was set in Casablanca in April 2014. In addition, the Bank posted its Draft Strategy on its webpage for 45 calendar days, during which civil society groups could react. It is in the latter framework that WSRW submitted its remarks, in January 2015.
WSRW never heard back from the Bank, nor received any reply. Only now has WSRW discovered that the Bank had posted the outcome of its consultation process on its webpage, late February 2015.
Apparently, the EBRD had only received one submission in response to its draft strategy note on Morocco: ours.
As a result, all public comments the Bank had received and was forced to reply to, dealt with Western Sahara. The result is positive: a clear statement from the EBRD ruling out its financial involvement in Western Sahara for the coming years.
Morocco occupies the major part of its neighbouring country, Western Sahara. Entering into business deals with Moroccan companies or authorities in the occupied territories gives an impression of political legitimacy to the occupation. It also gives job opportunities to Moroccan settlers and income to the Moroccan government. Western Sahara Resource Watch demands foreign companies leave Western Sahara until a solution to the conflict is found.
It's not easy keeping up with all the different legal proceedings relating to Western Sahara. For the sake of clarity, here's an overview of the five different cases at the Court of Justice of the European Union.
Leading activists from Western Sahara are condemned to sentences ranging from 20 years to life imprisonment in connection to a mass protest in 2010 denouncing the Saharawi people’s social and economic marginalization in their occupied land; the Gdeim Izik protest camp.
At COP22, beware of what you read about Morocco’s renewable energy efforts. An increasing part of the projects take place in the occupied territory of Western Sahara and is used for mineral plunder, new WSRW report documents.