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Spanish in Morocco

Last month, the Instituto Cervantes signed a contract with Moroccan universities Abdelmalek Essaâdi University of Tangier/Tetouan and the Mohammed V University of Rabat, to mark and promote Spanish language and culture at their institutions.  

This was regarded as a pending objective originally outlined at the ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ meeting between Spain and Morocco, held in Rabat, Morocco, last February.

The joint declaration highlighted 74 points of interest for international relations, including governance, strategic diplomacy, economics, along with teaching Spanish as a foreign language in Moroccan universities, and by the same notion, teaching Arabic in Spanish universities. 

Carmen Noguero, the Institute’s general secretary met with Deans Bouchta El Moumni, from the Abdelmalek Essaâdi University of Tangier/Tetúan, and Farid El Bacha, from the Mohammed V University of Rabat, at the Cervantes headquarters in Madrid last week to sign two specific documents as educational agreements. The declarations ensure the development of academic, scientific, technical, and research training activities in matters of common interest, as well as the joint organization of cultural activities benefiting the Moroccan university community.

Noguero described the meeting as “a commitment to work side by side” and a “reinforcement of the cooperation of the peoples on both sides of the Mediterranean.” 

El Moummi highlighted the essential collaborative relationship in the field of languages ​​and the value of the Memorandum of Understanding, his counterpart Farid El Bacha stressed “what politics cannot do, can be done by culture”.

The Abdelmalek Essaâdi University of Tetouan was founded in 1989 and is state owned. It is considered the first university in the northern region of Morocco and comprises fifteen institutions including schools and centers, in various locations in the Tanger-Tetouan-Al Hoceima region and in the city of Larache. The Mohammed V University of Rabat was founded in 1957 by royal decree and considered the first modern university in the country. Its two campuses are in Agdal and Souissi.

The Cervantes Institute already has six centers in Morocco: Casablanca, Fez, Marrakech, Rabat, Tangier and Tetouan. Smaller sites can also be found in Agadir, Larache, Mequínez, Nador and Kenitra and the centers have 56,500 students as Spanish learners in Morocco. 

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