Sister State relations between the State of Hawai'i and the greater Region of Rabat-Sale-Zemmour-Zaer, Kingdom of Morocco, were formally commemorated today with the signing of a Sister State Agreement by Hawai'i Governor Neil Abercrombie and Morocco's Rabat-Sale-Zemmour-Zaer Region President Bouamor Taghouan. Ambassador of the Kingdom of Morocco to the United States, His Excellency Rachad Bouhlal, was also present to witness the signing.
"The Sister State Agreement between Hawai'i and Morocco's greater Region of Rabat-Sale-Zemmour-Zaer seeks to promote cultural and educational exchange, increased tourism and international trade, synergistic infrastructure and urban planning, and environmental and clean energy partnerships," said Governor Abercrombie. "Despite being located halfway around the world, it is encouraging to recognize the many commonalities we share, which we hope will foster continued partnership and increased visitation between our two destinations."
Honorary Consul of Morocco in Hawai'i Jan Rumi said, "My passion is to build warm, friendly, mutually beneficial relations, a sort of "rainbow bridge,' between America's Aloha State and Morocco. I am thankful to the people of Hawai'i and humbled by their Aloha spirit. I am also thankful to the members of the Moroccan Delegation for their dedication and commitment to reaching out to us here in the Pacific to make this rainbow bridge a reality."
At 5 p.m. today, a groundbreaking ceremony will be held to mark the designated site of the Kingdom of Morocco's official gift to the State of Hawai'i of an authentic Moroccan fountain, which will be located on the Hawai'i State Art Museum (HiSAM) grounds. The Office of the Honorary Consul of Morocco in Hawai'i, Hawai'i-Morocco Friendship Association, and Hawai'i State Foundation on Culture and the Arts will host a reception from 5:30 to 7 p.m. in the HiSAM second floor courtyard.
Officials are also planning a "Week of His Majesty King Mohammed VI in Hawai'i" from Nov. 28 to Dec. 4, which will include the formal dedication of the Moroccan fountain as a symbol of friendship between the Sister States. The celebration will also highlight the arts, culture, cuisine and other aspects of Moroccan culture.