"We all aim to achieve reconciliation and cooperation by overcoming the negative aspects of the present and looking forward to the future, on the basis of our rich common history, our civilization and culture, and our true religion."
The Kingdom of Morocco is located on the westernmost part of North Africa. It occupies a strategic location that controls the lower half of the Strait of Gibraltar on the Mediterranean Sea while enjoying a long coastline on the Atlantic Ocean. Morocco is bordered on the east by Algeria and on the south by the Western Sahara territory. It has an area of 446,550 sq km (172,419 sq mi), a large part of which is desert.
Morocco's population is estimated at 31.2 million people (2002). The official language is Arabic, but French is widely spoken as well. Ethnically, Morocco is made up mostly of Arabs and a large minority of Berbers (40%). The religion of the majority of Moroccans is Islam.
Morocco is a lower-middle income country with a free market economy based on the private sector, but with major governmental participation that is being curtailed by sweeping privatization. It has an important agricultural sector that remains mostly traditional and that provides 25% of export earnings and employs 50% of the labor force. Morocco has 75% of the world's phosphate reserves and is the largest exporter of that commodity. It also has the richest fishing waters in the world, a sophisticated tourist industry, and a small manufacturing sector. Morocco's per capita gross domestic product (GDP) was estimated at US $3,700 in 2001. The Moroccan currency is the dirham .