Second U.S.-Africa Frontiers of Science, Engineering and Medicine Symposium Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Puneet Talwar

Tuesday, January 16, 9:00AM

Hassan II Academy of Science and Technology, Rabat


As Delivered

Thank you, Professor Bousmina.

Minister Miraoui, Professor Fassi Fihri, Dr. Gruber, Dr. McNutt, it is an honor to join you in welcoming such a distinguished group of scientists and researchers to Morocco. This symposium reflects the strong, historic partnership between the United States and Morocco.

It also reflects Morocco’s role as a leader in Africa.

I could not be more excited that this symposium is organized jointly by one of America’s most prestigious organizations – the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine – and one of Morocco’s premier scientific institutions — the Hassan II Academy of Science and Technology.

And I am delighted that we are joined by senior science and innovation officials from key U.S. government agencies. Dr. Bindu Nair from the Department of Defense, Dr. Asmeret Asefaw Berhe from the Department of Energy, and Dr. Mohammed Abdel-Kader from the Agency for International Development.

This symposium could not be more timely. Many of topics you will discuss are areas where Morocco has made considerable investments, especially in green energy and climate adaptation, vaccine manufacturing, and artificial intelligence.

These are topics which no single country can address on its own. They require a collective effort.

So, I am heartened to see scientists from dozens of respected universities and research institutions both from the United States and across Africa.

The connections and partnerships you will form, the knowledge you will share, not only will benefit each of you, but will benefit all of us.

Even though I am now a diplomat, once upon a time I was an engineer, specifically a materials scientist engineer. So, I appreciate the power of science and technology to transform lives. I also know from my own specialty that many of the greatest scientific advances take place through collaboration. Not only collaboration among scientific disciplines, but also collaboration among people with different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives.

Research is collaboration, and the more we bring our varying perspectives together, the more successful we will be.

While the United States is a world leader in scientific research, we know that we do not have all the answers. The African research community is helping to address critical issues facing the world today.

The United States has a profound interest in working with you, because we know that by leveraging our mutual strengths, Africa and the United States can better address our common challenges.

This symposium fills me with hope that we can improve lives through scientific research.

I have no doubt that you will discover during your stay how active Morocco is in fields that are at the cutting edge of research.

I wish you success in the coming days and beyond. We are all counting on you.