Rabat, Morocco (PortSEurope) July 17, 2019 – “Morocco enjoys an extraordinary geo-strategic position thanks to its Mediterranean-Atlantic coastline and its proximity to the European continent,” said Spanish Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism, Maria Reyes Maroto, speaking at the Morocco-Spain Investment and Business Forum, July 1-3.
The Spanish-Moroccan business forum opened Tuesday in Casablanca to discuss joint investment opportunities and partnership projects in the car industry, transports, renewable energy, water, agricultural technologies, agri-food industry, education and tourism.
The minister said that trade and infrastructure development meant that Morocco could consolidate itself as a platform for companies, a gateway to Africa for Europe and a hub for air connections and freight flows.
The two-day event, bringing together some 300 representatives of public administration and the private sector from both countries, aims to facilitate contacts between Moroccan and Spanish companies. The Forum is organized by the Spanish Secretariat of State for Trade, through ICEX Spain Export & Investment, the Spanish Economic & Commercial Offices in Casablanca and Rabat, the Spanish Confederation of Employers’ Organizations (CEOE) and the Chamber of Commerce in Spain.
Spain has maintained its position as Morocco’s first trading partner in the first quarter of 2019, both in terms of exports and imports, according to latest data released by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.Spanish exports to Morocco exceeded €2 billion at the end of March, a decrease of 1.28 pc compared with the same period last year.
Morocco’s infrastructure development is highlighted by the inauguration of Tanger Med 2 on the country’s Mediterranean coast, close to the Gibraltar Strait.
Tanger-Med 2 connects with 77 countries and 186 ports, benefitting from its location on the western Mediterranean Sea coastline and close to Atlantic Ocean sea lanes. It also benefits greatly from a developed hinterland, where preferential financial terms have encouraged many international businesses to set up manufacturing facilities, exporting goods to Europe and worldwide.
Tanger Med 2 port contains two container terminals, TC3 and TC4. Marsa Maroc, the main operator of ports in Morocco, will operate TC3, which has a capacity of 1 million TEUs. TC4 is operated to APM Terminals, an international container terminal operating company headquartered in the Netherlands, and has a capacity of 5 million TEUs.
The expanded port is surrounded by an industrial complex containing more than 750 companies, including the 300-hectare Tanger Automotive City, completed in 2011 and offering a free-trade zone for companies in the vehicle supply industry.
The extension is the result of nine years of work and €1.3 billion of public funding along with an equivalent amount pumped in by private investors.
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