Doing Business in Morocco


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Doing Business in Morocco

  1. 1. Doing Business in Morocco: 2010 CountryCommercial Guide for U.S. CompaniesINTERNATIONAL COPYRIGHT, U.S. & FOREIGN COMMERCIAL SERVICE AND U.S.DEPARTMENT OF STATE, 2010. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED OUTSIDE OF THE UNITEDSTATES. • Chapter 1: Doing Business In Morocco • Chapter 2: Political and Economic Environment • Chapter 3: Selling U.S. Products and Services • Chapter 4: Leading Sectors for U.S. Export and Investment • Chapter 5: Trade Regulations and Standards • Chapter 6: Investment Climate • Chapter 7: Trade and Project Financing • Chapter 8: Business Travel • Chapter 9: Contacts, Market Research and Trade Events • Chapter 10: Guide to Our Services
  2. 2. Return to table of contentsChapter 1: Doing Business in Morocco • Market Overview • Market Challenges • Market Opportunities • Market Entry StrategyMarket Overview Return to topThe U.S.-Moroccan Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which went into effect in 2006, is oneof the most comprehensive free trade agreements that the U.S. has ever negotiated.Morocco is the second Arab and first African nation to have an FTA with the U.S. TheFTA provides U.S. exporters increased access to the Moroccan market by eliminatingtariffs on 95% of currently traded consumer and industrial goods and levels the playingfield with European competition. It provides enhanced protection for U.S. intellectualproperty, including trademarks and digital copyrights, expanded protection for patentsand product approval information and tough penalties for piracy and counterfeiting.Morocco is steadily progressing toward greater internal modernization and globalization,with the creation of the country’s first commercial courts, streamlined customs servicesand 16 Regional Investment Centers dedicated solely to facilitating new businessventures. In 2003, the Moroccan government passed a comprehensive labor code thatprotects both employers and employees.Strategically located along the Strait of Gibraltar just a seven-hour flight from JFK andthree hours from Paris, Morocco is seen more and more as a regional hub in NorthAfrica for shipping logistics, assembly, production and sales. The moderateMediterranean climate on 2,750 miles of coastline and its developing infrastructure makeMorocco an attractive location for both business and leisure. Morocco’s AssociationAgreement and Advanced Status with the European Union (EU) and the FTA with theU.S. have spurred development of manufacturing. Morocco relies on these key tradeagreements to stimulate economic growth and to foster the job creation necessary tofacilitate social and educational reform.In the agricultural sector, Morocco is heading toward a good 2009-10 harvest. Therecord rain registered during the fall and early winter should lead to good yields in 2010.Morocco relies on imports to fulfill local demand for wheat. Morocco is the size ofCalifornia, but only 20% of the land is arable. There is substantial potential for expandedU.S. agricultural products and irrigation technology imports to Morocco.The U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) continues to make significantcontributions to infrastructure development in Morocco. In 2009, USTDA funded afeasibility study for the National Office of Ports (ONEP), which should result in theimplementation of Vessel Traffic Management Systems at the commercial ports of
  3. 3. Casablanca and Safi. USTDA also funded technical assistance for the National Office ofFisheries to support cold storage for artisanal fisheries. In 2010, USTDA signedfeasibility agreements for airport services and weather forecasting and identified projectsin water resources, electric power and renewable energy.In 2007, Morocco and the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) signed a five-year,$697.5 million Millennium Challenge Account Compact to reduce poverty and increaseeconomic growth. The program seeks to stimulate economic growth by increasingproductivity and improving employment in high-potential sectors including investments infruit tree productivity, small-scale fisheries, and crafts. Small business creation andgrowth will also be supported by investments in financial services and enterprisesupport. The Compact components include: • Fruit Tree Productivity Project ($300.90 million) • Small-Scale Fisheries Project ($116.17 million) • Artisan and Fes Medina Project ($111.87 million) • Financial Services Project ($46.20 million) • Enterprise Support Project ($33.85 million)Market Challenges Return to topU.S. exporters face strong competition from European trading partners, particularlyFrance. France and Morocco share a common language and have strong historical ties.European firms in general are familiar with all aspects of Moroccan business culture,financing, regulations and standards. They also visit Morocco quite often for leisure.The greatest barriers to trade in Morocco are irregularities and lack of transparency ingovernment procurement procedures, corruption and counterfeit goods. Although thegovernment is diligently working to liberalize the business environment, foreigncorporations still complain about these challenges. The FTA addressed most of theseissues and the Moroccan government is striving to make reforms.The legal and banking systems in Morocco differ in many significant ways from the The legal system is based on a combination of Spanish, French and Islamiclaw, making it sometimes complicated for U.S. companies. International and domesticarbitration are accepted and are often used in business contracts. Since the mid 1990sMorocco has made significant reforms to the banking system, focused on structures andprograms to attract inbound investment and to facilitate financing of projects andpurchases.Market Opportunities Return to topU.S. exporters can benefit from the opportunities opening up through the FTA and takeadvantage of Morocco’s position as a gateway to Europe, Africa and the Middle East.The U.S. Commercial Service has identified the following sectors as best prospects forU.S. firms. (See Chapter 4.)
  4. 4. • Wastewater treatment • Tourism support services • Medical equipment • Telecommunications equipment and services • Airport ground support equipment • Power generation systems • Safety and security equipment • Solid waste managementThe following agricultural products are the Foreign Agriculture Service’s best prospects.(See Chapter 4.) • Wheat, including durum • Corn, sorghum and corn products for feed • Other feed grains and non-grain feed ingredients (in drought years) • Crude vegetable oil • Oilseeds and products (soybean meal)Market Entry Strategy Return to topIn Morocco, business is based on trust and mutual respect built over time. U.S.exporters will need to travel to Morocco frequently to develop and strengthenrelationships in order to do business successfully. U.S. exporters also need to bepatient; all procedures take significantly more time to accomplish than U.S. firms may beused to. Moroccans appreciate close working relationships; so working with a locallybased agent or distributor will provide U.S. firms with essential knowledge of keycontacts, local customs rules and regulations, and niche opportunities. However,market-entry strategies often vary by sector and region. The staff of the U.S.Commercial Service in Morocco is available to provide individualized counseling todetermine the best market entry strategy for a given U.S. company/product. U.S. firmsare encouraged to contact the U.S. Export Assistance Center for an initial orientationand explanation of export assistance business services. to table of contents
  5. 5. Return to table of contentsChapter 2: Political and Economic EnvironmentFor background information on the political and economic environment in Morocco,please click on the link below to the U.S. Department of State Background Notes. to table of contents
  6. 6. Return to table of contentsChapter 3: Selling U.S. Products and Services • Using an Agent or Distributor • Establishing an Office • Franchising • Direct Marketing • Joint Ventures/Licensing • Selling to the Government • Distribution and Sales Channels • Selling Factors/Techniques • Electronic Commerce • Trade Promotion and Advertising • Pricing • Sales Service/Customer Support • Protecting Intellectual Property • Due Diligence • Local Professional Services • Web ResourcesUsing an Agent or Distributor Return to topForeign manufacturers and exporters are represented in the market either throughbranch offices or through authorized agents and distributors. Distributors customarilyprovide value-added technical support to end-users and often have contractualarrangements under which the local importers provide in-bond warehousing. Although itis legal for a U.S. corporation to be an independent distributor, local agents anddistributors are recommended to assist the U.S. firm with know-how and local customs.Some U.S. firms supply Morocco indirectly through regional distribution centers inEurope. Although having regional distribution centers is advantageous in terms oflanguage and shipping, the number of distribution levels makes competitive pricingdifficult.Large-scale stores based on the Costco or Wal-Mart model are a relatively newphenomenon and a good source for direct distribution of consumer products. TheGerman-owned Metro stores are in Casablanca, Rabat, Fes, Tangier and Agadir. Moretraditional European-style supermarkets such as Marjane are also present in major citiesand provide good markets for western food and household supplies. Moroccansupermarkets Label Vie and Aswak As Salaam are also present in Casablanca, Rabat,Marrakesh, Tangier and Kenitra and few large DIY hardware stores have opened inRabat and Casablanca.The U.S. Commercial Service, co-located with the U.S. Consulate General inCasablanca, provides advice on how to approach the Moroccan market and assists U.S.exporters in their search for potential partners. U.S. companies may also consult theirlocal U.S. Export Assistance Center. For the address and phone number of the nearest
  7. 7. U.S. Export Assistance Center, call 1-800-USA-TRADE (1-800-872-8723) or visitwww.BuyUSA.govEstablishing an Office Return to topMorocco’s 16 Regional Investment Centers are the government’s “one stop shops” forthe entire registration process, which has been greatly simplified in recent years. TheRegional Investment Center is mandated to provide a certificate within one week ofproviding it a completed application, a passport or ID (or a copy of an ID document if theapplicant is not personally present), and 150 dirhams (approx. $18 in April 2010). If thecompleted certificate is not picked up within one month, it automatically becomes voidand one must begin the process again.Upon receipt of the certificate and after presenting a proof of patent, a registrationreceipt from the Registre du Commerce for 350 dirhams (approx. $41), a fiscalstatement and a completed application to the social security savings bank (CaisseNationale de la Sécurité Sociale), the business can be established. All businesses aresubject to inspection by the Regional Investment Centers.Consult this website for more information on the Regional Investment Centers: Return to topOver 400 franchises operate in the fast food, clothing, office supply, furniture, cosmetics,office cleaning and auto repair sectors, representing an increase of 73% over the pastthree years. Franchise holders are attracted to the marketing image name recognition ofwell-known U.S. products and brands such as Hertz, Pepsi Cola, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut,Dominos Pizza, KFC, Haegen Dazs, TGI Friday’s, Budget, New Balance, FutureKids,Century21 and Midas. The successes of franchising stem from an expanding base ofyoung entrepreneurs many of whom are U.S. educated and have the financial means todevelop master franchises.Direct Marketing Return to topMarketing services and advertising agencies are increasing their use of direct marketingmethods. Common forms in Morocco are point-of-sale promotions, rotating billboards,direct mail and door-to-door sales. Avon and Oriflame (Sweden) are active in door-to-door cosmetic sales.There is a small but emerging market focused on internet sales and mobile phones.Though small now, this segment may become a major one in the near future, given thegrowth in the number of young people in Morocco and their tendency to rely on mobilephones and the Internet for information.
  8. 8. Joint Ventures/Licensing Return to topMoroccans are increasingly interested in joint venture business opportunities with as a way to modernize Moroccan factories or license technology. As far backas the 1960s, the manufacturing of U.S. products has typically started through jointventures or acquisition of a local Moroccan firm. Examples are Gillette, Coca-ColaExport Corp., Proctor & Gamble, Colgate Palmolive Maroc, Clark Gum, Fruit of theLoom, Jacob Delafon (Kohler), Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer Laboratories, Pepsi Cola,Simmons Maroc, Kraft Foods and Steelcase.Selling to the Government Return to topMoroccan government purchases are handled principally through government tendersand on rare occasions through mutual agreements or private contracts. In the lattercase, the government applies directly to firms, which have been traditional suppliersthrough their representatives in Morocco. Information on government procurementtenders is available in French and Arabic on the following web portal: ministry issues its own tenders, which are published in newspapers, issuingorganizations’ websites and announcements distributed to embassies. Deadlines rangefrom 30 to 90 days. Bidding documents are usually published in French and repliesmust be in French, using French or European standards (i.e., metric, 50/60 htz). TheU.S. Commercial Service in Morocco transmits notices of Moroccan government tendersto the U.S. Department of Commerce for listing in the Commerce Business Daily throughthe Economic Bulletin Board (EBB). Interested U.S. firms can access this information athttp://www.export.govIn 1998, the government approved a decree overhauling the public procurement systemto enhance transparency, accountability and competitiveness in procurement. In the last10 years, Morocco has made significant progress in creating a more transparent tenderprocess. Furthermore, Chapter 9 of the U.S.-Morocco FTA covers national treatment forU.S. firms and transparency and fairness in all transactions. For more information click and Sales Channels Return to topCasablanca and Tangier are the primary points of entry for foreign manufactured goodsfor direct distribution to the public, wholesalers, distributors and retailers. In addition,ferry services between Morocco, Spain and France allow goods to be imported andexported by truck. The $1.2 billion Tanger-Med port with a capacity of 3.5 millioncontainers is under development and is scheduled for completion by 2015. With itsassociated free trade zones, it will give Morocco the third largest container terminal inthe Mediterranean. The 40-hectare Terminal 1, under a concession to the Danishcompany APM Terminals, has been operational since June 2007, and Terminal 2,operated by Eurogate Tanger, opened in August 2008. The port is 35 km east from thenorthern city of Tangier and is expected to handle merchandise, grain and oil. Additional
  9. 9. development is planned for passenger and cruise terminals, roads and traininterconnections, and fuel and coal storage facilities.Selling Factors/Techniques Return to topMost local distributors of imported merchandise expect their suppliers to provide themwith substantial advertising and promotional support, particularly when introducing a newproduct or brand name. All promotional material and technical documentation should bein French or Arabic depending on the product. Clear and simple French operatinginstructions are necessary. U.S. firms should train local staff, provide full documentationof products in French, ensure an adequate supply of spare parts, and cooperate inadvertising and marketing.Electronic Commerce Return to topFor more information see Chapter 14 of the U.S.-Morocco FTA at Promotion and Advertising Return to topSeveral well known U.S. advertising firms have offices in Morocco that provide servicesfor new product launches, as do several Moroccan advertising agencies, albeit on asmaller scale.Morocco’s literacy rate is 60%, giving television a dominant role in the dissemination ofinformation. Television is the most prevalent vehicle for advertising, generating morethan 70% of advertising returns. Food, hygiene and beverages are the most commonproducts advertised on television, with multinationals such as Proctor & Gamble, PepsiCola, Gillette and Coca-Cola among the biggest advertisers. Newspapers andperiodicals continue to provide advertising space for a variety of products and services,but verification of subscriptions and circulation is difficult. The amount and importance ofbillboard advertising has dramatically increased in the last few years. Small andmedium-sized companies increasingly turn to the Internet as a means of reachingconsumers. While the number of Internet users reached 6.1 million in 2008, the numberof internet subscribers is increasing rapidly with a yearly increase of 21% in 2008. Manycompanies have established web pages, a very economical way to reach a targetedaudience.Pricing Return to topThe market freely determines commodity prices without government involvement withthe exception of staple commodities such as gasoline, vegetable oil, sugar, subsidizedflour and medicines. In 2003, Morocco implemented a new tariff system for grains
  10. 10. (barley, wheat and corn) that resulted in a significant increase in tariffs for bread wheat.The new tariffs supplemented the 1998 system that is still applicable for oilseeds andsugar. Any measure that threatens to raise the price of bread causes great publicoutcry. As a result, the government managed to raise the price of bread by only 10centimes in 2004 and has not raised it since.Sales Service/Customer Support Return to topIt is incumbent upon U.S. firms to supply their local distributor with customer andemployee documentation in French. U.S. companies are expected to provide training inbrand management and customer support services to their local representatives in orderto build strong business rapport and develop product loyalty.U.S companies should also offer product guarantees and instructions on product careand maintenance in French. As consumers increasingly gain access to low-priced high-quality goods, this information will support the quality level claimed by the supplier.Morocco lacks the equivalent of a Better Business Bureau and consumer feedback issometimes difficult to acquire.Protecting Intellectual Property Return to topIntroductionSeveral general principles are important for effective management of intellectualproperty rights (IPR) in Morocco. It is important to have an overall strategy to protectIPR. IPR is protected differently in Morocco than in the U.S., and products must beregistered and enforced in Morocco under local laws. Companies may wish to seekadvice from local attorneys or IP consultants. The U.S. Commercial Service will providea list of local lawyers upon request, as will the American Chamber of Commerce inMorocco: is vital that companies understand that intellectual property is primarily a private rightand that the U.S. government generally cannot enforce rights for private individuals inMorocco. It is the responsibility of the rights holders to register, protect and enforcetheir rights where relevant, retaining their own counsel and advisors. While the U.S.government is willing to assist, there is little it can do if the rights’ holders have not takenthese fundamental steps necessary to securing and enforcing their IPR in a timelyfashion. Moreover, in many countries, rights’ holders who delay enforcing their rights ona mistaken belief that the U.S. government can provide a political resolution to a legalproblem may find that their rights have been eroded or abrogated due to doctrines suchas statutes of limitations, laches, estoppels or unreasonable delay in prosecuting a lawsuit. In no instance should U.S. government advice be seen as a substitute for theobligation of a rights holder to promptly pursue its case.Companies are strongly advised to conduct thorough due diligence on partners.Projects and sales in Morocco require constant attention. Companies should work withlegal counsel familiar with Morocco’s laws to create a solid contract that includes non-
  11. 11. compete clauses, an arbitration clause and confidentiality/non-disclosure provisions.The contract should also contain a termination clause and/or an exit strategy.It is also recommended that small and medium-size companies understand theimportance of working together with trade associations and organizations to supportefforts to protect IPR and stop counterfeiting. There are a number of theseorganizations, both Morocco or U.S.-based. These include: • The U.S. and local American Chambers of Commerce • National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) • International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA) • International Trademark Association (INTA) • The Coalition Against Counterfeiting and Piracy • International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition (IACC) • Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) • Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) • Consumer Brand Protection GroupIPR ResourcesA wealth of information on protecting intellectual property rights (IPR) is freely availableto U.S. rights holders. Some excellent resources for companies regarding IP include thefollowing: • For information about patent, trademark, or copyright issues -- including enforcement issues in the US and other countries -- call the STOP! Hotline: 1- 866-999-HALT or register at • For more information about registering trademarks and patents (both in the U.S. as well as in foreign countries), contact the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) at: 1-800-786-9199. • For more information about registering for copyright protection in the U.S., contact the U.S. Copyright Office at: 1-202-707-5959. • For U.S. small and medium-size companies, the Department of Commerce offers a "SME IPR Advisory Program" available through the American Bar Association that provides one hour of free IPR legal advice for companies with concerns in Brazil, China, Egypt, India, Russia and Thailand. For details visit: • For information on obtaining and enforcing intellectual property rights and market-specific IP Toolkits visit This site is linked 6 to the USPTO website for registering trademarks and patents (both in the U.S. and in foreign countries) and the U.S. Customs & Border Protection website to record registered trademarks and copyrighted works (to assist customs in blocking imports of IPR-infringing products and to register for Webinars on protecting IPR).
  12. 12. • The U.S. Commerce Department has positioned IPR attachés in key markets around the world. Information for the IPR attaché, who covers Morocco (located in Egypt) can be found at: Climate in MoroccoThe U.S.-Morocco FTA contains some of the strongest intellectual property protection inany free trade agreement. In December 2004, the Moroccan Parliament passedamendments to its existing intellectual property legislation that brought Morocco intocompliance with its commitments under the World Trade Organization’s Agreement onTrade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). Morocco has a non-discriminatory legal system that is accessible to foreign investors. The CommercialCourts, established in 1998, have begun to mitigate the weakness in commercialproceedings. A system of commercial arbitration was also created in 1998.Morocco is a member of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and isparty to the Bern Copyright, Paris Industrial Property, and Universal CopyrightConventions; the Brussels Satellite Convention; and the Madrid, Nice and HagueAgreements for the Protection of Intellectual Property.While Moroccan intellectual property laws are generally adequate, enforcement hasbeen an issue. Counterfeiting of clothing, luggage and other consumer goods, as wellas the illegal copying of computer software, is common. As a result, many U.S.companies joined together to form their own advocacy group to combat IPR violations.Furthermore, the Business Software Alliance has been successful in educating retailersand consumers regarding software piracy. The Moroccan government is moreaggressive when it comes to tackling video piracy, and in response to complaints, thelocal music community has also stepped up enforcement efforts on CD and audiotapepiracy. Canal+, the French satellite subscription service, left Morocco because of thetrafficking of pirated de-encryption cards. Counterfeiting of clothing, luggage and evenpackaged food is increasing at a steady rate. However, as an FTA stipulation, theMoroccan government has promised to crack down on all such activity.Secured interests in property are recognized and enforced through the "Administrationde la Conservation Foncière." The Moroccan government has also passed a lawpermitting the development of a secondary mortgage market. Furthermore, the Office ofIndustrial Commercial Property (Office Marocain de la Propriété Industrielle etCommerciale) in Casablanca serves as a registry for intellectual property rights forpatents and trademarks in the industrial and commercial sectors. The Moroccan Bureauof Copyrights (Bureau Marocain des Droits d’Auteur) in Rabat registers copyrights forliterary and artistic works, including software. Since the FTA went into effect theMoroccan government is using the “first-in-time, first-in-right” principle to honortrademarks and copyrights. In the FTA, the Moroccan government also vows to combat“cyber-squatting” and other digitally related IPR violations. Diligence Return to top
  13. 13. Potential U.S. investors in Morocco and exporters of U.S goods and service providersare strongly encouraged to perform due diligence and research the bona fides ofpotential local agents, partners and customers, particularly when extending credit. Dueto the absence of a centralized credit agency, U.S. firms, especially those with noprevious Morocco experience, should seriously consider the U.S. Department ofCommerce International Company Profile (ICP) service prior to signing any agreementswith new partners. Using this service, the U.S. exporter can obtain information on thereputation, reliability and financial status of a potential partner in a confidential report,along with a recommendation from the U.S. Commercial Service as to the suitability ofthe company as a trading partner.Local Professional Services Return to topFor information on local professional services providers consult: • The U.S.-Morocco Chamber of Commerce: http://www.amcham- • The U.S. Commercial Service Business Service Provider list: Resources Return to top to table of contents
  14. 14. Return to table of contentsChapter 4: Leading Sectors for U.S. Exports and Investment Commercial Sectors • Wastewater Treatment • Franchising • Medical Equipment • Telecommunication Equipment & Services • Airport Ground Support Equipment • Renewable Energy • Safety & Security • Plastics Materials • Building & Construction • Agricultural Sector
  15. 15. Wastewater TreatmentOverview Return to topWater supply, for both drinking and crop irrigation, is a priority for the Moroccangovernment because of the country’s arid and semi-arid climate. Morocco uses 80% ofits water resources for agriculture, its primary export. Agricultural products contributed15% of GDP in 2009.Water resources are concentrated in the northwest of the country, requiring the transferof water from the north to the south. Access to potable water is quasi-universal in urbanarea with 92% connected to reliable services. However, poor urban neighborhoods relyon standpipes and vendors. In rural areas, access to potable water reached 80% in2008, compared to 14% in 1994. Urban sanitation is less developed, with only 70% ofthe population connected to sewage systems. It is estimated that urban wastewater willincrease from 600 million m3 in 2005, to 900 million m3 in 2020. Currently, wastewateris either discharged into the ocean with only physical treatment or is concentrated inregional basins.Morocco has developed several models for water management through the constructionof dams, large reservoirs and water transfers. Though not yet fully implemented, Law10-95 of 1995 allows for the establishment of river basin agencies to protect waterresources, measures to promote water use efficiency, better allocation of waterresources and protection of water quality through the application of user-pays andpolluter-pays principles.To meet expected demand growth for waste water management, Morocco launched theNational Sanitation Program (NSP) in 2006. The program’s objective is to develop andimprove wastewater collection and reuse to 60% and increase the rate of sanitationaccess to 80% in urban areas. The Program will cover 10 million people in 260 cities andtowns by the year 2020, at an estimated cost of $5.5 billion.Several governmental agencies have roles in the Moroccan water sector. Major entitiesinclude: • The Office National de l’Eau Potable (ONEP) is responsible for Morocco’s water supply and produces about 80% of the nation’s potable water. It is also responsible for quality management and water supply transmission to the local agencies. U.S. companies can consult ONEP’s website, for a list of tenders in different regions of the country related to water sanitation and potable water. • The Ministry of Interior ensures the provision of technical assistance and implementation of infrastructure, control, and application of the drainage policy. • The Ministry of Agriculture and Maritime Fishing is responsible for policy concerning the reuse of wastewater in agriculture.
  16. 16. • The Secretariat of State in Charge of Water and Environment is responsible for environmental policy. • Basin Agencies (“Régies”) are located in different regions of Morocco and are in charge of evaluating, planning, and managing water resources at the hydraulic basin level. These agencies have authorization for defining conditions required for using treated wastewater. • A Rural Commune (CR) is responsible for planning, organizing and managing public services, including water supply and sanitation, within its jurisdiction. CRs have the option to provide public services directly, or though a Régie, ONEP, a private operator, or a water user association (WUA).Best Prospects/Services Return to topPlans for increasing water supply capacity in Morocco offer a growing market to U.S.suppliers of water and wastewater equipment. Morocco needs state-of-the-arttechnology adapted to new water purification and wastewater treatment equipment.Water and wastewater treatment projects, rural water distribution technology anddesalination projects should be of interest to U.S. firms. The best prospects are: high-pressure water pumps, monitoring equipment, demineralization systems, watertreatment and distribution equipment, chemicals for water treatment, and remote controlequipment.Opportunities Return to topThere are many on-going projects in the water sector that offer good opportunities forU.S. suppliers. Companies should consult ONEP and the Secretariat of State in Chargeof Water and Environment websites for current tenders: • • Secretariat of State in Charge of Environment is expected to launch projects overthe next 20 years under the 2010 National Strategy for the Development of the WaterSector. However, short, medium and long-term projects are not defined yet. Majorareas are expected to include:Water demand management and valuation• In agriculture, conversion to modern irrigation systems and improvement of existing systems.• In tourism, developing norms and incentives to use water efficient devices: pipes, water-closets, etc.Supply management and development• Construction of 50 large and 1,000 small and mid-sized dams by 2030.
  17. 17. • A North-South transfer at the Bouregreg, Oum Er Rbia and Tensift basins.• Rainwater capture pilot projects which could lead to larger-scale deployment similar to what has been done in India and Australia.• Extension of artificial cloud insemination where possible.• Desalinization of seawater and demineralization of brackish waters.• Reuse of treated wastewater in golf courses, green spaces and crop irrigation.Preservation and protection of water resources, natural environment and sensitive areas• Accelerating the pace of the National Plan for Sanitation and treatment of wastewaters, targeted at an access rate of 90% in 2030.• A National Sanitation Plan for Rural Areas targeted at an access rate of 90% in 2030.• A National Plan for the Prevention and Fight Against Industrial Pollution.• Implementation of the National Plan for the Management of Household and Similar Waste.• A project to de-mineralize brackish waters for reuse in irrigation and drinking water.• A five-year project to artificially recharge aquifers.A pilot project will be launched at Hydraulic Basin which is suffering from floods. Thisproject consists of using high resolution satellite data, i.e., Geographic InformationSystem (GIS) for flood management. It will be managed by the Secretariat of State inCharge of Water and the Environment in coordination with the Hydraulic Basin. Thesame project will then be applied to the other hydraulic basins.The Secretariat of State in Charge of Water and the Environment is expected to launch astudy to optimize the national network of water quality measuring. The project consistsof assisting river basins to implement networks in their area of action.The hydraulic basins are expected to launch studies regarding the treatment andtransfer of waste water from the north to the south, artificial recharge of aquifers andirrigation.Resources Return to topCompanies should consider visiting and/or exhibiting at Morocco’s largest environmentaltrade show, POLLUTEC 2010, Casablanca - Oct 6-9 - www.pollutec-maroc.comThe Office National de l’Eau Potable (ONEP): in Charge of Water and Environment – Water Division: in Charge of Water and Environment - Environment Division:
  18. 18. FranchisingOverview Return to top 2007 2008 2009 Total Franchises In Morocco 341 376 404 Total Franchise Storefronts 2,274 2,726 3,198 US Franchises in Morocco 38 45 50*source: Moroccan Ministry of Commerce, Industry and New TechnologiesAlthough franchising started in the 1960s, the Moroccan market did not begin to growuntil 1990. Over the last three years the growth rate has been 37% annually. There are404 franchise networks, with 3,198 sale points, owned and operated by 1,041franchisees, 141 of which are master franchise license holders. The distribution of salespoints is concentrated in the metropolitan areas of Rabat and Casablanca due to highpopulation density and purchasing power. While 55% of franchising activity isdominated by distribution, 45% is services. Clothing, food services, home furnishing andshoe retail franchises have 45% of the market.French franchises dominate with 40% of the market, or 167 franchises. U.S. franchisesrank third with 50 brands representing 12% of the market. U.S. franchises dominate thefood sector (McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, El Rancho, Dominos, KFC, TGI Friday’s, etc.), carrental sector (Budget, Avis, Hertz, Dollar), and education sector (FutureKids, The FourthR, Dale Carnegie, Wall Street Institute, Berlitz). Although 83% of franchises areimported, young Moroccan entrepreneurs have developed 16% of total franchises.Franchising is considered the most efficient way of expanding their businesses, allowingthem to acquire national brand recognition without tremendous investmentFast growth rates in this non-regulated market drove the Moroccan FranchiseAssociation (AFM), created in 2002, to create a professional code of ethics that definesthe rules and limits of a well functioning franchise business.Major obstacles for franchising include: • Financing suited to the particularities of franchising is scarce. Ironically, banks perceive franchises as good risks, but their financing excludes the upfront franchise fees, usually the largest part of the investment. • Commercial real estate is expensive and property leasing is scarce.A major driver for franchising is the growth in urban population. About 60% ofMoroccans live in urban areas. Culturally, Moroccans are open to foreign brands.Best Prospects/Services Return to topU.S. brands are highly regarded by the Moroccan consumer, especially in food services.However, many potential buyers prefer to pay lower initial fees and higher royalties.Therefore, franchises with moderate franchise fees may be preferred over more
  19. 19. expensive ones. The following sectors are considered to be the most attractive inMorocco: • Fast food/casual dining • Education /training (languages, business training and higher education) • Supermarket, Hyper-mart chains • House wares and linens • Temporary employment services • Commercial real estate management services • Entertainment (movie theaters, entertainment parks)Opportunities Return to topFranchise activity is fully supported by the Moroccan Ministry of Commerce, Industry andNew Technologies whose development strategy targets three areas:First, in order to promote franchising, the Ministry sponsors the annual trade show MarocFranchise, held in Casablanca since 1997. It also fosters development of commercialinfrastructure that meets structural and logistical needs of franchisors.Second, the Ministry works closely with Moroccan financial institutions to educate themabout the specific financing necessary for franchisees and master license holders.Third, the Ministry promotes franchising as a business opportunity that helps the overallMoroccan economy to grow. The Moroccan Federation of Franchises and the MoroccanAssociation of Retail Networks are both working closely with the Moroccan governmentto improve public awareness about the role of franchising in the economy, as well as thebusiness environment of such activity.In order to overcome the financing and real estate hurdles, several large financial groupscreated subsidiaries with a parallel focus on franchising activity and commercial realestate development. They are continuously looking for new foreign concepts to expandtheir networks.Resources Return to topThe Franchising Division within the Moroccan Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Federation of Franchisers:
  20. 20. Medical EquipmentOverview Return to top U.S. Exports to Morocco Medical Equipment (In thousands of dollars)    2006 2007 2008 2009 Laboratory testing instruments $1,538 $1,604 $3,478 $16,055 Medical equipment $4,725 $7,881 $10,325 $7,418 Total $6,263 $9,485 $13,803 $23,473Source: U.S. Census, Foreign Trade StatisticsMorocco is a leading country in Africa in terms of healthcare equipment and services.Furthermore, Morocco serves as a healthcare center for Sub-Saharan countries.Though healthcare expenditures seem small compared to international standards,equivalent to 5% of Morocco’s (2007) budget and 1.24% of GDP, there has been ayearly increase in government spending on healthcare. Morocco’s 2008-2012 ActionPlan budget allocated $6.6 billion to healthcare, a 31.8% increased compared to the2003-2007 Action Plan.To meet the population growth rate (1.4%) and a growing domestic demand for modernand western healthcare standards, the Ministry of Health plans to modernize thehealthcare system. To increase hospital in-patient capacity, improve hospitaloperations, and automate its systems, the Ministry of Health plans for, under its 2008-2012 Action Plan: • 28 new regional hospitals • 2 new university hospitals in Agadir and Tangier • 6 new epidemiology labs in Marrakesh, Fes, Agadir, Tangier, Tétouan and Beni Mellal • 3 blood centers in Casablanca, El Jadida, and Marrakesh • A blood bank • Upgrades to 120 existing hospitals with modern equipmentIn 2009, the Ministry completed new hospital and oncology centers in Oujda, Marrakeshand El Hoceima. It also upgraded 50% of the existing hospitals, investing approximately$30 million in new equipment. In 2010, the Ministry will begin construction of a newuniversity hospital and a new oncology center in Tangier.In addition, law 65/00 on mandatory healthcare coverage (Assurance MaladieObligatoire “AMO”), which was implemented in August 2005, is rapidly increasinghealthcare coverage, which reached 10 million beneficiaries at the end of 2008. In 2008,the Regime d’Assistance Medicale “Ramed” implemented plans to offer healthcare forthe lowest income population (estimated at 8.5 million people) and a special insurance,
  21. 21. INAYA, for workers in the handicraft sector. Private businesses will also help provideaccess to high quality healthcare.The public sector has 127 public hospitals, 4 university hospitals (Centres HospitaliersUniversitaires or “CHU”), which are autonomous but under the general supervision of theMinistry of Health, 4 military hospitals, and 40 blood banks. Thirteen Social Securityhospitals (Polycliniques de la Caisse Nationale de Securite Sociale or “CNSS”), whichbelong to the national social security system, will be privatized in 2010. The publicsector has just under 90,000 hospital beds and 380 operating theaters, and serves thelargest percentage of clients. The public sector provides basic immunization as well asthe high-end medical care (cardiology, oncology, gastroenterology, radiology, surgery,etc.). The private sector has 248 private clinics, which compete with the public sector.Due to the growing demand, this number is increasing rapidly. In 2010, private investorsplan to build the largest private Moroccan clinic in Casablanca, with high-end equipment.In addition to private clinics, Moroccan private radiology centers provide radiologyservices exclusively.U.S. firms, such as GE HealthCare, Varian, Hill Rom and 3M are active in the Moroccanmarket, supplying 50% of the radiology equipment and 60% of the oncology equipment.Best Prospects/Services Return to topLocal medical material and equipment production is extremely low and limited to basicmaterials such as furniture, bandages and syringes. Morocco relies on imports to supplyhospital facilities with technologically advanced medical devices, such as: • Ultra-sonic scanning • Magnetic resonance imaging • X-Rays • Electro-diagnostic equipment • Computerized tomography • Monitoring equipment • E-medicine, equipment and related software.Opportunities Return to topWith a total of 410 healthcare centers (1.15 hospital beds per 1,000 inhabitants),Morocco offers growing opportunities for medical equipment and services in public andprivate hospitals, as well as radiology centers and clinical laboratories. Since Morocco isa French-speaking country with physicians and health technicians trained in French,U.S. firms must provide technical manuals in French to register their products with theMinistry of Health. Furthermore, U.S. firms must consider that French is a basicrequirement in the public tendering process. However, U.S. technical and managerialexpertise is highly regarded. With this reputation, U.S. firms could benefit tremendouslyfrom reforms to improve the public health sector, as well as the U.S. Morocco FreeTrade Agreement (FTA)(, which will abolish import duties on all equipment. The FTA,implemented in 2006, offers a “competitive import advantage” over European
  22. 22. competitors. Since 2006, U.S. exports of medical equipment posted steady annualincreases (see table above).Resources Return to topMinistry of Health: Census:
  23. 23. Telecommunication Equipment & ServicesOverview Return to top Information Communication  U.S. Exports to Morocco  Technology  (in thousands of dollars)    2006  2007  2008  2009  Computers  $ 7,347  $  4,445  $ 6,932  $ 6,694  Computer accessories  $12,037  $  5,143  $ 4,174  $ 4,233  Telecommunications equipment  $17,743  $15,367  $19,452  $21,993  Total   $37,127  $24,955  $30,558  $32,920 Source:  U.S. Census, Foreign Trade Statistics Morocco continues to liberalize its law to allow for more competition and the emergenceof new technologies in the telecommunications sector. The number of operators grewfrom one incumbent operator in 1999, to 3 firms, Maroc Telecom, Meditel and Wana,which operate fixed local loop, long distance backbone, international gateway systems,and 3G licenses, 5 gmpcs operators and 3 VSAT operators.In December 2009, the number of fixed-access lines reached 3.5 million (compared to2.9 million lines in December 2008 and 2.3 million lines in December 2007), or apenetration rate of 11.28% (9.7% in December 2008). The government of Moroccoplans to increase the fixed-line penetration rate to 4 million fixed-lines in the next fiveyears. Progress has been made in infrastructure development with digitalization of thenetworks, ADSL, wireless internet access, using 2G and 3G technology. However, theinternet penetration rate remains very low (less than 2%). In addition, with 55% of thefixed-lines concentrated in the Rabat-Casablanca axis, there are excellent opportunitiesfor growth in rural areas as there is a large unmet demand for fixed-linetelecommunications, particularly for business, Internet and data services.In 2009, Morocco exceeded the government’s plans to increase the number of mobilesubscribers to 17 million by 2010. In December 2009, mobile operators, Maroc Telecom(70.77% market share), Meditel (36.72% market share), and the new entrant Wana(2.51% market share), served a total of 25.311 million subscribers (versus 22.816 millionsubscribers in December 2008), representing an increase in the penetration rate from73.98% (December 2008) to 81.18% (December 2009).In February 2010, the Moroccan Government announced its plan to reach 34 millionmobile subscribers by 2013. With liberalization, lack of fixed-line infrastructure in remoteareas and the high illiteracy rate, which defines Morocco as a country of “verbal”communication, the number of mobile users continues to increase. The presentoperators, which continue to deploy their infrastructure, all need to invest in equipment togain market shares.There are approximately 9 million internet users, including ISP subscriptions (1.186million in December 2009), pre-paid users (1.6 million in December 2009), cyber cafeclients, universities and public administrations. The government of Morocco plans toreach 10 million internet users by 2010 through E-learning, E-administration, E-business
  24. 24. and E-medicine. In December 2009, the Moroccan internet market posted a yearlyincrease of 56.7% compared to 2008.The number of 3G users ranks first with 59.58% of the total market, followed by ADSL at39.98%.A project called Generalization of New Information Technologies for Education (GENIE)will equip 9,260 schools with computers and internet access by 2013. In 2006, 2,000schools were equipped and will be connected to the Internet by 2010. Under the newGENIE 2009-2013 Strategic Plan, the government will equip and connect 2,122 schoolsin 2010, 2,103 schools in 2011 and 2,100 schools in 2012.In 2008, the government launched the Program for Access to Telecommunications(PACTE), which aims at providing telecommunications to more than 9,263 underservedareas by 2011. The government will invest more than $170 million to provide 2 millionpeople with voice and Internet access. The internet market is expected to grow stronglyin the near future and offers excellent opportunities to U.S. firms.Best Prospects/Services Return to top • Fixed-line telephone infrastructure, equipment and related services • Cellular telephone infrastructure, equipment and related services • Internet • VSAT, GSM, GMPCS equipment • 2 G and 3G infrastructure, equipment and related services • Systems integration.Opportunities Return to topWith the implementation of the FTA, customs duties have been eliminated on most U.S.telecommunications products, which may help to give U.S.-sourced equipment a priceadvantage.The present 3G, fixed-line, cellular, wireless, VSAT, GMPCS and trunking networks willoffer good opportunities for U.S. firms to provide equipment and services.Telecommunications equipment that is not listed in the regulator’s website( requires an authorization from the regulator. Bandwidthoperating licenses must also be requested from the regulator.Resources Return to top • Regulatory Agency: Agence Nationale de Reglementation des Telecommunications “ANRT”: • Ministry of Industry, Commerce and New Technologies, Department of New Technologies: • Maroc Telecom: • Meditel: • Wana: • U.S.-Morocco Free Trade Agreement. Tariff schedule of Morocco:
  25. 25. • GENIE project:
  26. 26. Airport Ground Support EquipmentOverview Return to top 2002 2008 2009 International passengers (millions) 6.4 11.3 13.3 Commercial flights (thousands) 91.3 136.1 N/A Commercial airlines (excluding low-cost airlines) 22 44 45Source: Moroccan Ministry of TourismMorocco has 24 airports: 15 international airports, 6 domestic airports and 3 airportsthat serve as secondary platforms. More than half the air traffic goes throughCasablanca’s Mohammed V Airport, followed by Marrakesh Menara (24%) and Agadir(14%). In 2007, Morocco’s national carrier, Royal Air Maroc, flew 4.2 million passengersto 70 destinations, of which 50 are international.Morocco’s tourism development strategy, targeted at reaching 10 million tourists by2010, relies on the parallel growth of its lodging capacity and air transportationavailability. In 2004, Morocco adopted an air transportation liberalization policy, whichresulted in an immediate increase in international arrivals and foreign carriers. It alsoboosted Morocco’s share of new point-to-point markets (Ryan Air and Easy Jet havecreated 51 and 75 new lines respectively during the last two years).Management of Moroccan airports is assigned to the Moroccan Airports Authority (OfficeNational des Aeroports or ONDA), a government agency supervised by the Ministry ofEquipment and Transportation. ONDA is also responsible for air traffic control andairport safety and security management. ONDA is dedicated to liberalizing charteractivity, concluding more private-to-government agreements and encouraging the privatesector to be more involved in airport management.After successful implementation of its 2004-07 strategic plan, ONDA designed acontinuity plan for 2008-12 based on three major objectives: • Integrating European air space as well as the European Galileo satellite program • Developing the Casablanca Airport platform to serve as an international hub connecting Africa to Europe and America to the Middle East • Certifying major Moroccan airports according to QSE international standardsIn line with its 2008-10 plan, in 2009, ONDA invested more than $179 million in airportextensions, $33 million in air navigation development and $86 million in other projects,including integrated safety and security systems and other IT infrastructure.Best Prospects/Services Return to topU.S. companies involved in air navigation control systems, radio communicationsystems, baggage handling, scanning equipment and passenger security devices,airport engineering and consulting services will find excellent opportunities in Morocco.Opportunities Return to top
  27. 27. The 2008-10 development plan aims to increase the total airports capacity to 22.2 millionpassengers. This will require an investment of $1.4 billion.While a detailed layout of major projects by airport is available on ONDA’s website, thenext in line projects include: • Renovation of Oujda Airport with a new 20,000 m2 terminal to increase capacity to 2 million passengers, and a new control tower for $120 million. • The construction of a new terminal III at Marrakesh Menara Airport will require $108 million and will double the airport’s current capacity of 4 million passengers by 2010. • The extension of Rabat’s terminal from 5,000 m2 currently to 17,000 m2. This should lead to an increase in passenger capacity from 700,000 to 1.75 million in 2011.ONDA will also support RAM’s plan to optimize its operations and make CasablancaTerminal I its international hub. RAM received a grant in 2010 from the U.S. Trade andDevelopment Agency to fund a feasibility study to assess how best to enhance theairlines operations at Casablancas Mohammed V Airport. The grant will also help RAMin meeting its business development goals. When completed, the study is expected togenerate several opportunities in airport ground support equipment and services for U.S.companies.ONDA’s future projects spending related to import of equipment and services are largelysupported by a $325 million approved loan from the African Development Bank. Inaddition to several airport extensions, this line of financing will cover a second RegionalControl Center for the south of Morocco and the upgrade of security infrastructure.Future projects also include the development of a techno-pole in the vicinity of theMohammed V Airport for zero-pollution industries. To date, a $100 million privateinvestment helped establish 50 companies in different hi-tech industrial sectors. Thisincludes a Minco subsidiary and Matis, a joint venture between Royal Air Maroc, Boeingand Labinal, that manufactures wiring harnesses for Boeing and other aircraft.Resources Return to topONDA’s development plan:’s grant:
  28. 28. Renewable EnergyOverview Return to top Electricity Generation (GWh generated) 2007 2008 2020 Thermal 5,201 5758 4500 Wind 278 297 7200 Hydraulic (net) 789 785 1572 Total Renewable Electrical Capacity (GWh/year) 6,268 6,840 13,272 Net Electrical Capacity (GWh/year) 22,608 24,002 61.000*source: Moroccan Ministry of Energy, Mining, Water and EnvironmentMorocco is the only North African country with no known substantial fossil fuel deposits.As Morocco’s energy supply depends heavily on imports (97%), in 2009 the Moroccangovernment adopted a strategy based on an accelerated development of its renewableresources. The energy plan expects to increase the renewable share of installedcapacity in electricity generation to 42% by 2020 as opposed to 26% in 2008 (of which24% is from hydroelectric plants).The Moroccos geography and topography provide abundant renewable energyresources: • Wind resources at a speed reaching 10m/s capable of generating as much as 25GW (Morocco Wind Atlas, CDER, 2007). • Solar captivity up to 5.7 kwh/m2/day and 3000 hours of sunshine yearly. • Biomass resources can produce more than 950 MW.In 2008, Morocco had an installed capacity from renewable energy of 1,903 GW, ofwhich 90% is large-scale hydroelectric plants. Of the remainder, 82% is wind parks, 12%thermo-solar plants, 5% photovoltaic solar installations and the rest micro-hydroelectricplants and biomass treatment plants. By the end of 2010, this capacity will beaugmented by 500 MW thanks to the completion of several projects (Tanafnit El Borjhydroelectric, 40 MW; Aïn Beni Mathar thermo-solar plant, 452 MW of natural gascombined cycle and 20 MW of solar; Tangier wind park, 140 MW, Tarfaya Park, 300MW).Morocco’s electric power production is insufficient to meet a demand that has beenincreasing at an average annual rate of 8% for the past five years. The balance ofelectricity consumption (18% in 2008) has been supplied by electricity imports thanks tointerconnections with Spain and Algeria with capacities of 1,400 MW and 1,000 MWrespectively.Morocco has a well defined energy strategy for 2009-2020 that aims at to 1) improvesecurity of supply through a more diverse energy mix, 2) increase access to electricitywith more competitive pricing, and 3) promote regional integration through increasedopenness to Euro-Mediterranean power markets. These objectives are supported by twonew institution, the Agency for Development of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency(ADEREE) and the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy (MASEN), and by a $1 billionFund for Energy Development.
  29. 29. L’Office National de l’Electricité (ONE), a state owned company, is the principal entity inMorocco’s electricity sector, with a monopoly on transmission and the largest in-countrydistribution grid. Unlike transmission activity, power generation in Morocco has beenextended to private companies since 1990 when the first independent power plant (IPP)was awarded to CMS Energy/ABB consortium under a 30-year BOT (Build, Operate,Transfer) contract. Today, IPPs are responsible for approximately half of powerproduction in Morocco. Therefore, IPP developers are the key buyers of RE equipment.However, under current regulations, ONE remains the sole buyer of electricity productionas well as the entity to which IPP assets are transferred after the end of the concessionperiod.Best Products/Services Return to topAll power production projects in Morocco are conducted through international tenders fordevelopment under a concession basis. U.S. manufacturers of solar/wind/biomassequipment are encouraged to partner with U.S. developers, in order to participate intenders as joint consortiums.Also, specialized engineering services are sourced internationally. U.S. companies areencouraged to respond to requests for proposals regarding consultants for the design oftechnical specifications of large project tenders. Companies should be aware that if theyare involved in design tenders they will be prohibited from bidding for subsequentbuilding and management tenders for that particular project.More than 24,700 jobs are to be created by renewables by 2030. As such, technicaltraining services for facilities repair and maintenance is part of the government’s actionplan. Technopolis campus, an industrial park in Rabat, has announced a programdedicated to attracting renewable energy research and development into its facilities.Opportunities Return to topElectricity demand in Morocco is expected to grow by 8.5 % to 9% annually until 2020.This is mainly driven by an ambitious rural electrification plan for 100% coverage. Inorder to increase the renewable share in its power production, Morocco will beundertaking the following projects.The Solar Energy Initiative: launched in 2009, this $9 billion initiative includes theinstallation of 2000 MW in 5 sites of 10,000 hectares by 2020. An international tender forthe Ouarzazate site (500 MW) is expected to be issued by September 2010 and the plantdelivery is slated for 2015. Once completed, the solar initiative will meet 14% of powerdemand.The Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy (MASEN) was created in 2010, and will beresponsible for this project. Its mandate is to implement the overall project (design,choice of operators, implementation, management) and to coordinate and superviseother activities related to this initiative. Stakeholders of the Agency include the Hassan IIFund For Economic & Social Development, Energetic Investment Company and theOffice National de l’Electricité, all government entities. More information on the SolarEnergy Initiative can be found on: MASEN web site will be located at
  30. 30. The EnergiPro program is a set of incentives to encourage private operators tocontribute to a total installation of 1000 MW of wind energy by 2015. The Moroccangovernment encourages private producers of wind power to engage in a tri-partyagreement with a Moroccan buyer and the Office National d’Electricite (ONE), whichsecures the transportation of electric power as well as the purchase of any excessproduction. This program also involves heavy manufacturers who may choose toproduce their own electricity needs. Several private companies, who are major energyconsumers, have initiated their own wind parks. For example, Nareva, a subsidiary ofOmnium Nord Africain (ONA), the largest private holding in Morocco, is thedeveloper/operator of small scale wind farms. Nareva has signed two agreementsrecently for the development of two wind parks with the Moroccan rail authority (ONCF)and the Moroccan Airports authority (ONDA).Biomass has the potential of 950 MW based on abundant agricultural resources,including wide areas for livestock breading (2.6 million cattle, 16.3 million sheep and 5.3million goats). The recent Green Morocco strategy to boost agricultural production andnew regulations for waste management represent an additional potential of 400 MW bythe year 2030. A U.S. consortium (GESI-Edgeboro-SADAT) won a government tenderfor the management of the first controlled landfill in Fes in 2002. Today, it is projectingto convert methane gas from the landfill into electricity to power all Fes public lighting.The Moroccan government requires all its agencies to design an energy strategy. Assuch, the construction sector is encouraged to integrate solar resources in buildingprojects (use of solar water heaters).Morocco’s power interconnections, its integration within the EU energy space, andimproved green energy price competitiveness will allow it to tap into the Europeanmarkets for exports of renewable energy.Resources Return to topMoroccan Ministry of Energy, Mining, Water and Environment: National de l’Electricité: or technical specs for equipment: Centre de Développement des EnergiesRenouvelables: Agency for Solar Energy (MASEN):
  31. 31. Safety & Security EquipmentOverview Return to top U.S. Exports to Morocco (In thousands of dollars) Safety and Security 2006 2007 2008 2009 Measuring, testing, control instruments $4,256 $4,448 $6,232 $3,912Source:  U.S. Census, Foreign Trade Statistics.  Note:  The above table indicates the direct exports from the USA to Morocco.  Exports of U.S. goods and services are higher since many products enter the Moroccan market through their European subsidiaries. Safety and security grew in importance in all key industry sectors in Morocco as a resultof increased security incidents and concerns in recent years.The market for equipment and services, which was negligible a few years ago, isexpected to increase by 20-25% in the next five years. As local production is non-existent, imported safety and security products supply nearly 95% of the entire market.Until recently, European firms have dominated the market and have taken advantage ofopportunities to provide equipment and services. U.S. imports are increasing steadily inpart as a result of reduced or zero customs duties (derived from the U.S.-Morocco FreeTrade Agreement, FTA) and a low dollar value (compared to the Euro) that improves theprice competitiveness of U.S. goods and services.Moroccan airports, seaports, border crossings, buildings and national security agencieshave started upgrading their security systems. In addition, agreements with the UnitedStates and other countries require upgrades at airports and seaports. Morocco’sgeographic location as a gateway to Europe also requires the protection of borders andcheckpoints against illegal immigration, human trafficking and narcotics.Best Products/Services Return to topBest prospects include all security and safety equipment and related solutions forseaports, airports, border crossings, security and safety agencies such as the police,and buildings.Opportunities Return to topThe growing Moroccan safety and security market presents tremendous opportunities forproducts such as metal detectors, personal access checking systems, walk-throughscanners, monitoring and surveillance systems, intrusion detection systems, motionsensors, video cameras, fire prevention and control equipment, alarm equipment forbuilding safety, emergency evacuation systems, radio communication systems, trainingand services for security equipment, airport specific equipment such as luggage-screening devices, biometric systems for access control to secure areas at airports, andnon-intrusive inspection equipment for containers, seaport cargo, etc.
  32. 32. In 2007, Morocco signed an open-skies agreement with the EU. By integratingMorocco’s flights with European airspace, Morocco becomes a platform for Africancountries that do not offer direct flights to Europe, the United States and the Middle East.Morocco also agreed to implement a new system based on satellite and digitaltechnologies (CNS/ATM).Under its 2008-2012 Development Plan, the Office National des Aéroports (ONDA)(National Airport Authority) will continue to develop new and expand existing airportcapacity. In 2009, ONDA invested approximately USD 179 million in the extension ofairports, $36 million in air navigation equipment and $87 in safety and securityequipment. During the 2010-2012 years of its Development Plan, ONDA will investapproximately USD 580 million to expand and equip the existing airports with thefollowing systems: • fences • cameras • luggage screening • passenger and cargo screening • radar extension • radio-navigation • radio-communication • telecommunications • fire-fighting systems.Moroccan ports handle more than 95% of Morocco’s foreign trade. Among the 33 portsmanaged by the Société d’Exploitation des Ports (SODEP, also known as MARSAMaroc), Casablanca port is one of the largest in Africa and handles more than 38% ofthe country’s overall imported and exported goods.Morocco has initiated major reforms to improve the competitiveness of its ports. Thesereforms continue to create opportunities for U.S. suppliers as the Moroccan ports arebrought into the international sphere of regulations and agreements.In 2008, Morocco began construction of a third container terminal in Casablanca. Thisproject will require an estimated 208 million in new equipment. In 2007, the governmentcompleted construction of the first container terminal at Tanger-Med, located in Tangier,now the third largest container port in Africa. The Tanger-Med Special Agency (TMSA)is a semi-governmental Moroccan entity that manages administration of the port’sconcessions. In 2007, TMSA awarded European-based EADS a contract to provide anintegrated maritime security system. EADS began deploying the security system in2008 and plans to complete installation by 2011 and may be offering opportunities topotential subcontractors. In 2009, U.S. firms provided security equipment such assurveillance systems. Tanger-Med Port is expanding its capacity through a secondlarger container port, started in 2008. Tanger-Med plans to invest approximately $4.2billion in safety and security equipment by 2016.Morocco agreed in 2004 to comply with the International Ship and Port Security Code(ISPS). In order to ship directly to the U.S., Morocco should also comply with the U.S.
  33. 33. Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA) and the Customs Trade PartnershipAgainst Terrorism (C-TPAT).In 2009, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) awarded a $280,238 grantto the National Ports Agency of Morocco (Agence Nationale des Ports, or “ANP”), toconduct a feasibility study for the implementation of a vessel traffic management systemand a security/surveillance system (VTMS/security system) at the Casablanca and Safiports. This grant is expected to lead to international tenders for safety and securityequipment. ANP plans to invest approximately $11.5 million to equip: • Casablanca port with access control and badges • Safi, Laayoune and Dakhla ports with VTS systems • Agadir port with a container scanner • Nador, Al Hoceima, Casablanca, Jorf Lasfar, Agadir and Laayoune ports with passenger and luggage scanners and explosive and narcotics detectors.In 2009, TMSA launched a direct shipment line from Tanger-Med to the U.S. With theimplementation of the FTA, Moroccan ports are expected to increase their shipments tothe United States, and containers will need to be screened before they are shipped. TheTanger-Med port requires advance electronic cargo information/advance electronicmanifests equipment.In addition to the maritime transportation of goods, a significant number of Moroccanresidents abroad enter Morocco through the Port of Tangier. Frequent ferries transportpassengers and vehicles between Spain and Morocco. Morocco has several programsunderway to encourage a significantly higher number of tourists, up to 10 million by2010, and the port will need to acquire new equipment such as luggage screeningsystems, metal detectors, x-ray scanners, access control equipment and fire-fightingsystems.Public and private facilities have begun to acquire security equipment and hire securityservice companies to protect their staff and buildings against terrorist attacks. Moroccanexporters that target the U.S. market will need to secure their facilities to obtain C-TPATcertification. Also, the demographic growth, unemployment and rural exodus to themajor cities contribute to security concerns. In addition, to enhance domestic and bordersecurity, and to comply with international regulations, the Ministry of Interior andnumerous government agencies, as well as private industries, continue to invest insecurity equipment. U.S. firms specializing in safety and security will have excellentopportunities in Morocco to sell first-class equipment.Resources Return to topMinistry of Equipment and Transport: or National des Aéroports:
  34. 34. Customs Office: Security Advisory Council: http://www.ds-osac.orgTanger-Med Special Agency: http://www.tmsa.maAgence Nationale des Ports:été d’Exploitation des Ports (SODEP also known as MARSA Maroc):
  35. 35. Plastics MaterialsOverview Return to top U.S. Exports to Morocco ($mil) 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 Plastics $ 3.8 $46.5 $55.8 $63.2 $62.0Source: World Trade AtlasU.S companies operating in the plastics sector can benefit from the profitable marketopportunities in Morocco. According to World Trade Atlas, U.S. exports of plastic toMorocco have increased by 1,531% from 2005 to 2009. The largest change was in theyear 2006 when the U.S.-Morocco Free Trade Agreement went into effect, reducing oreliminating customs duties. The favorable U.S dollar exchange rate also encouragedimports from the U.S.As local production volumes of plastic raw material is almost inexistent, Morocco importsthe majority of its 500,000 MT of current plastics needs from the Middle East, UnitedStates, and Europe with which it has already established several free trade treaties.The Moroccan company La Société Nationale d’Electrolyse et de Pétrochimie (LaSNEP) is the only local manufacturer of rigid PVC. In 2009, the capacity of its plant was70,000 tons and it supplied 60% of PVC in Morocco. It is expected that the SNEP willincrease its capacity to meet domestic and export demands.After examining a request made by the SNEP for the application of safeguard measuresagainst imports of PVC, the Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Trade initiated an investigationin accordance with the World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreement on Safeguards.The product subject to the investigation, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), is used in Morocco tomanufacture tubes, connectors, cables, window sections, roller shutters, joints, technicalpackaging, bottle making, shoes, etc.Total imports of plastic materials increased by 60% from 2001 to 2006, and are forecastto increase by 15% from 2007 through 2010.
  36. 36. Imported Raw Plastics Material Selected Types 2007‐2009 140 120 100 80 2007 60 2008 40 20 2009 0 Tons PP LDPE &  HDPE PS PET PVC LLDPE Source: World Trade AtlasThe plastics segments included in the above chart are expected to triple in the next fewyears. This growth will be driven by government plans to open a second Port of Tanger-Med and extend the Moroccan freeway network allowing easier distribution throughoutthe country. Growth in the Moroccan auto industry will also drive growth of plastics.The Moroccan government actively promotes and legislates environmentally friendlyproducts, affecting the types of and standards for products that may be manufactured incountry. For example, several Moroccan ministries issued a joint decree in 2009,banning the production of black plastic bags. .Best Products/Services Return to topDifferent forms of plastic raw material/resins, i.e. PP, LDPE & LLDPE, HDPE, PS, PETand PVC.Opportunities Return to topU.S. companies can benefit from free trade agreements that Morocco has signed withdifferent countries: the United States, United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Tunisia, Egypt andJordan, in addition to a partnership agreement with the European Union. Theseagreements allow the reduction of import duties and therefore the cost of importedplastic raw material and plastic machinery to Morocco.The plastics sector is still an emerging sector with a per capita consumption of 16 to 17Kg. In 2007, it employed 10,000 direct and 25,000 indirect employees. There are 500companies operating in the plastics sector, generating an output of 450,000 tons. In2007, it generated a turnover of $718 million.
  37. 37. Household  Plastic Production 2007 Items Technical Parts 7% 6% Packaging 39% Shoes 26% Construction  Source: World Trade Atlas Ag Sheeting Material 12% 10%In 2007, the packaging sector absorbed 39% of plastic production for: food, beverages,edible oil, perfumes, cosmetics, pharmaceutical products and hygienic products. Theconstruction sector absorbed 10% for: large infrastructure projects, i.e. hydraulics,highways and roads, ports (Tanger-Med), airports, sports and cultural products.Technical parts, including electronics, automobile and aerospace, represented 6%.Several international auto manufacturers and electronic components manufacturers areoutsourcing production of their plastic parts in Morocco due to the skilled Moroccanworkforce. HDPE is highly used in blow-molding, injection, films, pipes and closures,while LDPE and LLDPE are highly used in agriculture, high density and small bags.This wide and growing use of plastics illustrates the high demand and potential for U.Scompanies manufacturing and the distributing plastic raw material.Resources Return to topAssociation Marocaine de Plasturgie (Moroccan Association of Plastic)
  38. 38. Building & ConstructionOverview Return to topFollowing the construction boom of 2006, the Moroccan building and construction sectorcontinued rapid growth in 2007 and 2008. It experienced a slight slowdown in 2009.However, large government projects continue to drive the market upward.Though it is difficult to obtain accurate data on all segments of the building andconstruction sector, there are indicators that point toward opportunities for U.S. firms inthe industry. Since 2001, the building sector consistently contributed 4.5% of the GDPand ranks second in the country’s foreign investments. Government infrastructureprojects such as highway and road construction, harbor and airport extensions, privatetourism projects, construction of new schools and hospitals, low-cost housing andresorts that combine conference facilities, villas and hotels, all contribute to the buildingand construction sector growth.With an urban population growth of 4% per year, a need to decongest urban areas andmeet the demand for property, the government began a New Cities program aimed atcreating 15 new cities by 2020. Under the New Cities program, the governmentprovides land to the public at competitive prices and tax incentives to developers whocommit to build 500 low-cost units within five years. To help Moroccans accessproperty, the government established three funds that grant loans at advantageous ratesto government employees (Fogaloge-Public Fund), to teachers (MohammedVI/FOGALEF Fund) and to low-income or temporarily employed people (FOGARIMFund). Two new cities started in 2004, Tamansourt near Marrakesh, and Tamesna,near Rabat, will provide 88,000 and 54,000 units, respectively, for a total investment of$7.2 billion.In 2009, the government launched the construction of Ch’rafate, a new city in Tangier,which will provide 30,000 housing units for an investment of $2.9 billion. A furtherinvestment of approximately $1.9 billion will build 130,000 low-cost houses priced atapproximately $16,887 per unit by 2012.Due to the success of these cities, the government allocated $18 million for studies onadditional projects.Despite the efforts of the government of Morocco to accelerate the production of low-cost houses, only 110,000 units are built annually -- not enough to meet demand. Todeal with the housing shortage by 2014, Morocco needs to build approximately 158,500units annually.To meet demand in the education sector, the Ministry of Education, under its 2009-2012Emergency Plan, began to build 4,774 new schools and extend 187 existing schools. Toencourage construction of private schools, Morocco also established the “Fonds dePromotion de l’Enseignement Privé (FOPEP) to co-finance the construction of privateschools. The private sector is also negotiating with the Indiana State University to buildan American university in Casablanca.
  39. 39. Morocco has very aggressive plans in the tourism sector. It aims to make the country aleading destination, which requires the construction of new facilities, as well asrenovation and equipping of existing facilities in order to meet international standards.Best Products/Services Return to topAlthough there is significant competition in the Moroccan building and constructionsector, U.S. firms will find excellent opportunities to provide building methods thatguarantee safety, and provide short delays in delivery at a lower cost. Currently,Moroccan traditional building methods result in long delays and consequently highercosts, hampering access to property for mid-range income families. U.S. buildingmethods that provide housing at affordable prices have a market with the middle andhigh-income households. In the tourism sector, U.S. firms will find substantialopportunities to participate in turnkey projects that meet international standards,including a wide range of luxury hotels and resort facilities.Opportunities Return to topMorocco offers excellent opportunities to U.S. firms in the following segments:Building materials:• Innovative building materials• Steel• Prefabricated building• Glass• Aluminum doors, windows and frame• Luxury bath tubs, washbasins, and toilet seats• Luxury bath and kitchen hardware and accessories• Luxury door and window knobs and fixtures• Pigments• Paints, varnishes• Vinyl floor covering• Solar water heaters• Heating/Air conditioningEquipment:• Bulldozers and angle dozers• Rock drilling and earth boring equipment• Integral tractor shovel loaders• Shovels, excavators• Sorting, screening, separating and washing machines for earth, stone, ores, or other mineral substances in solid form• Crushing machines for earth, stone, ores, etc.• Grinding machines for earth, stones, etc.• Concrete/Mortar mixers• Machines for mixing mineral substances with bitumen• Escalators and moving walkways.
  40. 40. Resources Return to topMinistry of Housing: of Builders:, Building and Public Works Trade Show (Salon international du Bâtiment etdes travaux publics), May 26-30, 2010, Casablanca
  41. 41. Agricultural Sectors Return to topMorocco’s agricultural production depends mainly on rainfall, as only about 10 percent ofthe planted area is irrigated. As a result, agricultural output fluctuates heavily from yearto year. Due to its significant contribution to the country’s GDP (averaging around 15percent in recent years), the agricultural sector influences the growth level of the wholeeconomy. The large fluctuations in output are also reflected in the fluctuation inagricultural imports of some commodities such as animal feed, wheat and oilseeds. In2009, the Moroccan government continued the implementation of its new strategy(Morocco Green Plan started in 2008) for agricultural development that aims atencouraging domestic and foreign investment in agriculture as a means to generateemployment, transfer new technologies and achieve a better integration with the worldeconomy. Major areas for investment have been olives, citrus, grapes, dairy, exoticfruits, etc. The new strategy also aims at providing leverage for small farmers toconsolidate outputs and increase value-added production.In general, Moroccan agriculture remains mostly traditional with limited applications ofproduction inputs such as fertilizers, pesticides and mechanization. However, many ofthe export-oriented farms, especially fruits and vegetable producers, have investedheavily in modern irrigation equipment, new production and marketing technologies thathelp them meet international standards. Morocco’s agricultural exports consist mostly offresh citrus, other fruits and vegetables targeted at nearby European markets. In recentyears, Morocco’s exports to EU Markets accounted for about two-thirds of its totalagricultural and food exports, estimated at $1.5 - $2.5 billion annually. Moroccanexports of agricultural and food products to the United States (consist mostly of citrus,olives, olive oil, anchovies, and sardines) are steadily growing but still much smallercompared with exports to the EU markets. In 2008 Morocco food and agriculturalexports to the U.S. are estimated to be about $141 million.Morocco imports about $4-6 billion worth of food and agricultural products annually. In2008, Morocco’s imports were estimated at $5.7 billion, with exports from the U.S. exporttotaling about 10 percent market share. EU exporters generally supply about one-thirdof Moroccan agricultural and food imports while the U.S. typically supplies about 8-10percent. U.S. exports are mostly bulk commodities. However, following theimplementation of the FTA, U.S. exporters increased their market shares of manytraditional commodities and gained access to new to market products such as applesand dairy products. According to official U.S. trade data, U.S. agricultural and foodexports to Morocco in 2008 were estimated at $523 million. In the period Jan-Nov 2009,U.S. agricultural and food exports are estimated at about $450 million, down 6 percentcompared to the same period in 2008.Moroccan Agricultural Imports from the United States (in Millions of Dollars)
  42. 42. Full Cal. Year Jan. Nov 2007 2008 2008 2009 % CHNG BULK 504.9 198.1 180.4 210.7 +16.8 • Wheat 256.5 59.9 53.4 27.7 - 48.1 • Coarse Grains 153.9 83.9 83.9 123 + 46.6 • Soybeans 92.8 46.5 36.3 42.5 + 17.2 • Cotton 0.9 7.8 6.8 17.5 + 157.9 INTERMEDIATE 136.8 238 220.9 212.5 - 4.0 • Soybean Oil 51.0 122 117.5 106.5 - 9.3 • Soybean Meal 45.4 54.3 52.1 68.6 + 31.6 • Feeds & Fodders 21.3 37.6 35.5 24.5 - 31.0 • Animal Fats 11.4 9.0 9.0 7.0 - 22.4 • Other Intermediate 2.9 4.4 4.1 3.3 - 19.3 • Planting Seeds 2.6 3.3 3.0 2.0 - 32.4 • Vegetable Oils (Ex Soy) 1.9 0.6 0.6 3.3 +370.0 • Live Animals (Dairy Cattle) 0.1 6.8 6.7 0.3 - 95.5 CONSUMER-ORIENTED 27.9 85.5 76.9 25.3 - 67 • Dairy Products 22.6 77.8 73.3 16.8 - 77.0 • Fruit & Veg. Juices 2.1 1.6 1.6 0.9 - 46.8 • Tree Nuts 1.8 3.3 2.5 4.7 + 91.7 • Fresh Fruit (apples) 0.4 1.7 1.72 1.69 - 1.7 • Other Consumer Oriented 0.3 0.7 0.7 0.6 - 7.9 • Processed Fruit & Veg. 0.3 0.4 0.3 0.7 + 118.7 FOREST PRODUCTS 1.0 0.9 0.8 0.9 + 8.2 SEAFOOD PRODUCTS 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.07 - 49.3 AGRICULTURAL TOTAL 669.7 522.6 479.1 449.0 - 6.0Source: Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau, Foreign Trade StatisticsDetailed information on the FTA can be found at Morocco’sdemand for U.S. bulk commodities is expected to continue, though at slower pace, butthe implantation of FTA provisions in agriculture should help increase demand for manyU.S. high-value product exports, including apples, dried fruits, milk powder and cheese.Best Prospects for Morocco are: - Wheat, including durum - Corn, corn products and sorghum for feed - Other feed grains and non-grain feed ingredients (in drought years) - Crude vegetable oil - Oilseeds and products (soybean meal) - Purebred pregnant dairy cattle and dairy semen - Milk powder, unsalted butter, whey and cheese for pizza - Dried fruits and nuts (pistachios, walnuts, non-pitted prunes, raisins and almonds)
  43. 43. - Apples (red and golden delicious) - Confectionary items - Seafood - Canned products.Several consumer-oriented food products offer good opportunity for U.S. suppliers inspite of the high freight costs. These include sauces, condiments, canned fruit andvegetables, confectionary items and snack foodsPure-bred Dairy Cattle Association(Association Nationale des Eleveurs de Bovins de Races Pures or ANEB)M. Abdelllah Lomri, Directeur5, Rue Mohamed Triki, Residence Tissir, Im. B. Apt. 2Rabat 10050, MoroccoPhone: (212-3) 723-0244 Fax: (212-3) 723-0262Email: aneb@menara.maFeed and Poultry Federation(Fédération Interprofessionnelle du Secteur Avicole or FISA)Moulay Youssef Alaoui; President123, Boulevard Emile ZolaCasablanca, MoroccoPhone: (212-2) 231-1249 Fax: (212-2) 244-2276Website: Email: and Grains Traders Federation(Fédération des Négociants de Céréales et Légumineuses or FNCL)M. Bouchaib EL Haddaj57 Avenue Abdelmoumen, Residence El HadiBatiment B4, 1er etage, Casablanca, MoroccoPhone: (212-2) 247-6438/247-6468 Fax:(212-2) 247-4207Email: country USDA contacts:Office of Agricultural Affairs, U.S. Embassy RabatDr. Hassan F. Ahmed, Regional Agricultural AttachéPhone: (212-3) 776-5987 Fax: (212-3) 776-5493Email: AgRabat@usda.govList of USDA/FAS Commodity Reports and Briefs:The Agricultural Attaché regularly reports on special issues (such as significant changesin policy). Public FAS/USDA agricultural and food reports can be found at Due Date Grain and Feed Annual April 6