I am on my way to Ghana tomorrow morning and you just need to know that this Administration is very focused on doing all we can to promote economic development in this part of the world, in Africa, throughout Africa, North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.
Laura Bush is the same way. I mean, they both, um, understand, they understand the challenges of the moment and understand the responsibilities, he understands the responsibilities he has to protect the national security of America as well as the economic security of America.
The U.S. views Morocco as an important friend, and we applaud your political and economic reforms that culminated with the recent parliamentary elections that were widely reported to have been conducted in a fair and open manner.
And when you really think about the 9-11 event, the horrific attack on our land here in America and the death of three thousand of out loved ones, it was a defining moment.
This is my first visit to Africa, a region where President Bush has voiced a deep passion for fostering and encouraging economic development, investment and trade.
This is my first opportunity to visit this part of North Africa, so I am going to be able to go back home and talk about this beautiful country and encourage Americans to travel here.
As President Bush has said on numerous occasions, it is the government's role to create the conditions, the friendly environment, that will attract capital.
All Moroccans are justifiably proud of the development of democratic institutions in Morocco.
At the very outset I want to say how the people of America appreciate the steadfast support of the people of Morocco, the leadership of Morocco in our war against terrorism.
When you poll all of the economists, uh, across America that I think are intellectually honest they would all, or maybe not all, but 95% of them 96% of them would say you know we really have got a powerful economy.
But, we have had the debate in our country now for a number of years as to whether or not free trade agreements are good for economic growth and economic opportunity in creating jobs and lifting people out of poverty.
Well, you can, but tell you this, that when you've got an economy that is growing at 4.9% it is the fastest growth over the last 12 months we've seen in 20 years.
You mentioned the Free Trade Agreement and yes I can't tell you how pleased we are that Morocco is one of the countries that our country is going to begin negotiating a Free Trade Agreement with.
I am going to be announcing today that we will have a business delegation come to this country sometime in the future where we will bring businesses from America to Morocco to show them the vast business opportunities here.
There are opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry, the insurance industry, so yes back home we are talking about investment opportunities in Morocco for various sectors of our economy and we will continue to do that.
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