Developing U.S.-Morocco relations involves immigration

Moroccan and American Flag
Immigration plays an important role in the development of bilateral relations between countries. Because the human flow consolidates historical links and creates new common interests. This is not the case of the relations between Morocco and the USA.
Moroccans are among the peoples that immigrate, more than five million live abroad, mainly the European Union. They play a crucial role in the commercial, political and cultural exchange between Europe and Morocco. And the more Moroccans obtain the nationality of a European country, the relations progress.
Tens of thousands of Moroccans become Europeans. The figures for 2017 are very significant. 67,000 naturalizations: 33.4% in Italy, 25.2% in Spain and 24.6% in France. Meanwhile, the number of Moroccans who have obtained U.S. citizenship in 2018 is very small, less than 1900. Morocco is the first country in the world to recognize the U.S in the year 1977. One of the closest geographically compared to African and Arab countries. However, bilateral relations are not progressing. For example, no U.S. president visited Morocco except President Eisenhower in 1959.
The low presence of Moroccans in the USA explains the failure of the free trade agreement between Morocco and the USA, which was signed in 2004. With the exception of the military, cooperation in other fields is weak.
If Washington wants to develop relations with Rabat, it must think about how to encourage Moroccan immigration to the US. Seems like an absurd idea because President Donald Trump wants to limit the entry of immigrants. But historical reality indicates that it is impossible to develop bilateral relations between two countries without the human factor.

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