U.S. and Morocco Sign Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement
As previously reported, the USTR on Nov. 21 announced the signing of a bilateral trade facilitation agreement with Morocco that includes provisions on internet publication, transit, transparency with respect to penalties, and other issues that are expected to improve Morocco’s competitiveness and benefit its trade environment. On that same date, Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Rand Beers and Moroccan Minister of Economy and Finance Mohamed Boussaid signed a separate bilateral Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement that will provide a partnership and legal framework for information sharing and cooperation between the customs authorities of the two countries. A DHS press release notes that the agreement will allow the U.S. and Morocco to exchange information and engage in a range of other forms of mutual assistance to collect revenue and protect both countries from threats. Cooperative efforts will also focus on combatting fraud and coping with the myriad of challenges facing customs and trade.