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Ana Palacio: "Europe needs to understand that to continue to count in the world it must have a common voice in transatlantic relations, with Russia and China".

The former Foreign Affairs Minister took part in presentation of the latest report Global Affairs 2022, focusing on relations between Spain and Morocco.

PhotoJoséJuan Rico/

30 | 01 | 2022

"Europe needs to understand that in order to continue to count in the world it must have a common voice in transatlantic relations, with Russia and China". With these words, the former Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Spanish government, Ana Palacio, summed up what, in her opinion, should be the role that the European Union should play in the international order. In a convulsive geopolitical context due to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, Ana Palacio recalled that Europe's position throughout history "is the best example of seeking peace through prosperity and dialogue". "Now Europe needs to have an external projection", she added.  

Ana Palacio intervened in the presentation of the latest report Global Affairs Journal, edited by the Global Affairs Centre of the University's Law School School . The event took place last Thursday in the Alumni building of the University of Navarra in Madrid and was also attended by the researchers who signed the five articles that make up the report: Carlos Echeverría (UNED), Ignacio source Cobo (high school Español de programs of study Estratégicos -IEEE-), Jesús Pérez Triana (, Ignacio Urbasos (Master's Degree en Energía Int, Science Po), as well as the University's professor of International Office , Salvador Sánchez Tapia. This year's analysis focused on relations between Spain and Morocco. 

Ana Palacio pointed to a starting point in relations with Morocco. "In Morocco, there is much more knowledge from them towards us, towards Europe, than from us towards them. There is no equivalence," she said. 

The former minister did not hesitate to affirm: "The EU's African policy is beginning to be weighed down by the report of colonisation. It is a collective conscience, and this makes us less effective, less competitive with Russia, Turkey, China or India". Palacio stressed that the need for infrastructures is a clear demand on the African continent: transport, electricity, etc. And, without ruling out investment in green, renewable energy, "Morocco's commitment to renewables is remarkable," he said, Palacio advocated not excluding gas as a necessary energy source source . 

An assertive neighbour and cross-strait connectivity

Ana Palacio's speech was followed by a roundtable in which the researchers explained the main key points of the articles that make up the report Global Affairs Journal 2022. Spain-Morocco: geostrategic awareness. An assertive neighbour and the connectivity of the strait. Salvador Sánchez Tapia, professor of International Office at the university, delves into the present and future of Spanish-Moroccan relations in the context of the Maghreb. In his article , researcher Jesús Pérez Triana describes the keys to understanding Morocco's current foreign policy. " An impenetrable country that at every historical moment has managed to present its objectives as being totally aligned with the White House", he added.

Ignacio Urbasos, former student of the university, focuses his study on the energy transition and Morocco's aspirations to become a regional power based on three pillars: the development of renewable energies, the creation of industrial towns and logistical ports that will make it the main gateway to Europe. " Morocco has managed to sell a very powerful message to the world that it is a green country", said researcher. Carlos Echeverría provides some keys to understanding the Western Sahara issue, and Ignacio source Cobo analyses the state and interests in Spain's relations with Algeria and Libya. 

All articles are available for download at the following address link.

From left to right, Carlos Echeverría, Ignacio source, Emili Blasco, Ana Palacio, Ignacio Urbasos, José Pérez Triana and Salvador Sánchez Tapia.