I should like, first of all, to commend my dear sister, Her Royal Highness Princess Lalla Hasnaa, President of the Mohammed VI Foundation for the Protection of the Environment, for her tremendous efforts to help protect our beaches and improve their quality, and to create the momentum needed for fruitful competition between our beaches.
I should like, once again, to praise the work carried out by the Foundation, which falls within the scope of the development efforts I am spearheading as part of a coherent, continuous program designed to promote awareness about the need to preserve our country’s natural resources and diversity within the framework of a sustainable development policy.
In this connection, I regard the Clean Beaches program as a model of practical action for preserving our beaches and for promoting environmental conservation habits through partnership mechanisms and the combined efforts of all the stakeholders involved.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Ten years after the launch of this ambitious program, I should like to express my deep satisfaction with the positive impact it has had on the preservation of our coastal environment.
Blue Flag standards have been adopted to make sure that our beaches satisfy international norms, and that the waste discharged directly into the sea is gradually reduced. Appropriate administrative measures have also been taken to put an end to the indiscriminate extraction of sand from beaches.
I also commend local governments for their untiring efforts to ensure good, responsible management of coastal environments, and expand and improve sanitary facilities. Measures have also been taken to ensure the safe practice of water sports and sensitize people about the importance of preserving the environment.
Notwithstanding all that has been accomplished so far, further efforts are needed to make sure these constructive initiatives are sustained, since the environment is a common asset. It is the current and future generations’ collective responsibility to preserve it.
I therefore urge all actors involved in environmental protection, particularly the Mohammed VI Foundation for the Protection of the Environment, to take an active part in the preparation of the comprehensive national environmental charter, for which I called in the State of the Nation Address. We shall thus place environmental issues at the heart of all development programs.
In this respect, I also call for further cooperation and coordination between field programs carried out by government authorities and outreach activities organized by community associations to ensure efficient awareness-raising.
Diligent action is also needed to complete the legal measures required for integrated coastal management, within the framework of a comprehensive approach to sustainable development.
In addition to pursuing its fieldwork, I am confident this vibrant institution will spare no effort, at national level, to support government action and promote awareness-raising and outreach activities. At regional and international levels, I am sure it will continue to play an active part, especially with respect to the United Nations Environment Programme’s Mediterranean Coast Day.
In this regard, I offer my dear sister, Her Royal Highness Princess Lalla Hasna, my warmest congratulations on her well-deserved appointment as Ambassador for the Coast by the UN-sponsored Mediterranean Action Plan.
We are all proud of this honour bestowed on Her Royal Highness in recognition of her commendable efforts in the area of environmental protection to tackle the various risks threatening the safety, ecological balance and beauty of our environment.
I should like to congratulate this year’s winners and to tell them the prizes they have won are not only a reward for their untiring efforts, but they are also meant to serve as an incentive for all the parties concerned to be actively involved in this national effort, in their respective areas of competence. The aim is to create the right conditions for sustainable development in our country, ensure that all Moroccans enjoy a free, dignified life and live in a healthy environment. In addition to symbolizing hope and love of life, clean beaches are an essential part of the environment and of social life in general.
I will always encourage and support this leading institution’s lofty action, about which I care deeply. I commend the work of the Foundation’s President, my dear sister, Her Royal Highness Princess Lalla Hasnaa, of the hairman of the Board, of the administrative and technical staff and of the Foundation’s partners.
I wish you every success.
Wasslamu alaikum warahmatullah wabarakatuh.
King of Morocco