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Mohamed Ait Kadi as a Diplomatic Negotiator Case Study

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Updated: Jul 15th, 2020


Carrying out the negotiation process that is supposed to link two states in an economic partnership is a challenging task. Apart from considering the specifics of the economics, politics, and the legal system of each party, one also has to adjust the negotiation strategy to the culture of the opponent. More importantly, one will have to put the needs of the people before one’s convictions, which makes the entire communication process beyond simply difficult.

Requiring a significant amount of restraint, the process of reaching a political and economic agreement presupposes designing an elaborate strategy that will help one retain the current position in the global economic environment and at the same time gain new opportunities. As an example of the approach outlined above, the recent agreement signed between Morocco and the United States by Mohamed Ait Kadi needs to be mentioned. Being a stellar representation of a well put together negotiation tactics and strategies, the given communication process led to the required results due to the wise and sophisticated strategy created by M Kadi.

Mastermind Negotiator

The reasons for granting Mohamed Ait Kadi with the title of the mastermind negotiator are, in fact, rather evident. Not only did he manage to negotiate with the partners but he also carries out the process in a brilliant manner. First and most obvious, the cultural barriers between the USA and Morocco were outstandingly high, yet the negotiator managed to overcome them: “The case of barley perfectly illustrates our relationship with the American party. Due to political reasons, it became impossible to maintain the initial Moroccan offer for this product” (Zartman 2007, p. 12).

Another reason for claiming Mohamed Ait Kadi to have reached the pinnacle of the art of negotiation concerns the ay, in which he addressed the geopolitical situation. There is no secret that the geopolitical interests pursued by the United States and Morocco have very little in common (Kortmann & Rosenow-Williams 2013). Nevertheless, Kadi designed the negotiation strategy that helped him smoothen the rough angles and approach the dilemma from a very reasonable angle: “We opted to carry out a rational negotiation that would allow us to establish a symbiotic relationship of the FTA with the USA and keep hold of Morocco’s position in the EuroMediterranean area” (Zartman 2007, p. 9).

The fact that Kadi’s strategy opened a pool of opportunities for an international and intercultural dialog should be viewed as a legitimate reason for granting him the title mentioned above. In light of the challenges that the process of negotiation implied as far as the cross-cultural issues were concerned, reaching a compromise could be considered a significant achievement.

The String of Accomplishments

By spelling out the goals of the negotiation process, Kadi also made a huge step forward in redesigning the current relationships with the United States. To be more exact, the choice of sectorial negotiations as the means of carrying out the process in a fruitful manner needs to be noted. The reasons for Kadi’s choice were rather understandable; according to the provided clarification, “In this way, the group on agriculture had to deal with market access, rules of origin, sanitary and phytosanitary measures and protection measures” (Zartman 2007, p. 10). Therefore, the preparation stage was the first accomplishment toward stellar success.

The goals of the negotiation were planned, as the interview with Mohammed has shown. The given factor also contributed to the success of the communication process; as a result, the conversation could be directed exactly the way, in which Mohammed wanted it to go. Consequently, the communication goals set before the meeting could be attained comparatively easily.

The fact that Ali Kadi managed to carry out the negotiations that led to what is described in diplomacy as a win-win situation also deserves attention. The definition of the mandate, in its turn, should be viewed as the final and the crucial stage in the negotiation process. Being the point of the process that is typically identified as an agreement (Aggraval & Urata 2013), the stage under analysis, the given stage was reached comparatively easily.

Negotiation Strategies in Action: Examples

The adoption of a collaborative negotiation strategy was the next big step toward achieving the desired outcome. Unless Kadi deployed the above approach, the agreement might not have occurred at all as the relationships between the United States and Morocco could be described as underdeveloped at that point (Blokdijk 2015). Therefore, it was imperative to make sure that the U. S. should see Morocco and its authorities as partners in trade, politics, and other domains, as opposed to rivals and opponents. The above negotiation approach, in its turn, served as the prerequisite to building stronger and more peaceful relationships with the USA.

Apart from the collaborative approach, the one putting a stronger emphasis on the experience of Morocco as far as the economic processes were concerned. Specifically, the issue regarding the partnership with FTA and FAO needs to be emphasized: “Within the framework of this project, FAO emphasizes capacity building in negotiation through training but also provides member countries with case studies that give value to people’s experiences” (Zartman 2007, p. 6). Therefore, Kadi should also be credited for using the resources at hand to the benefit of the state, its economy, and political status in the contemporary global economy.

Tools for Regaining Power

When it comes to defining the tools that contributed to Kadi’s success in regaining power in the specified department, one must admit that the focus on what was important at the moment played a crucial role in the development of the situation. In a retrospect, the political leader did not foist his point of view on the opponent; quite on the contrary, the approach that Kadi adopted could be defined as lacking aggression and contributing to communication in a rather relaxed environment. The above attitude toward the resolution of the problem displayed Kadi’s willingness to address a specific issue as opposed to his attitude regarding the issue. In other words, the personal convictions concerning the subject matter did not play a single role in shaping the negotiation strategy (Maude, 2014).

Drawing Essential Lessons: My Negotiation Strategies

The case study under analysis provides rather explicit lessons concerning the significance of a proper negotiation strategy. The political relationships between the United States and Morocco are not as strong as the representative soft eh latter wish they could be. Therefore, a significant effort had to be made so that the two states could reach out to each other and that no culture clashes or any other types of misunderstandings should occur in the process. Therefore, a wisely chosen strategy based on compromise and cooperation needed to be chosen. The importance of finding common points of contact between the representatives of entirely different cultures, therefore, can be considered the most important lesson in the specified scenario.

Moreover, the fact that the communication process was planned so well and finally led to the predicted outcome needs to be brought up as an essential accomplishment. The lesson to be learned is, therefore, that any communication taking place at the state level needs to be planned thoroughly so that every possible outcome could be identified and that the strategies possibly used by the opponent could be outlined. It is important to make sure that one could be able to retain dignity and manage one’s emotions perfectly even in the environment that can be viewed as politically and socially hostile (Lenhart 2014).


The negotiation process carried out by Kadi is one of the most memorable dialogs in the history of Morocco. Although the communication process implied fighting a range of controversies and avoiding several conflicts, an impressive result was gained due to the elaborate strategy chosen by Kadi and the tactics that he utilized to conduct the meeting. Therefore, the case study teaches the importance of planning the process of communication as well as maintaining the policy based on compromise and mutual understanding. Because of the striking differences between the culture of the United States and the one of Morocco, drastic misunderstandings could have ensued, including both political and social ones. However, instead, with the help of a well-balanced strategy of negotiation and an approach based on identifying every possible route of the scenario development, one is likely to attain stunning success.

Reference List

Aggarwal, V, & Urata, S 2013, Bilateral trade agreements in the Asia-Pacific: origins, evolution, and implications, Routledge, New York, NY. Web.

Blokdijk, G 2015, Collaboration – simple steps to win, insights and opportunities for maxing out success, Emereo Publishing, New York, NY. Web.

Kortmann, M, & Rosenow-Williams, K R 2013, Islamic organizations in Europe and the USA: a multidisciplinary perspective, Routledge, New York, NY. Web.

Lenhart, K 2014, Getting to yes: negotiation skills & strategies, Lulu.com, New York, NY. Web.

Maude, B 2014, International business negotiation: principles and practice, Palgrave Macmillan, London, UK. Web.

Zartman, W 2007, The experience of Mohamed Ait Kadi in the negotiation for the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between USA and Morocco, FAO, Rome. Web.

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