EIB launches series of private sector conferences in Morocco
At the opening of the European Investment Bank (EIB)’s conference held in Casablanca, Morocco, on the theme of “Enterprise development – a key dimension of Morocco’s economy”, EIB Vice-President Philippe de Fontaine Vive called for further private sector development in the Mediterranean Partner Countries (MPCs) via the Bank’s Facility for Euro-Mediterranean Investment and Partnership (FEMIP), which forms part of his portfolio of responsibilities.
Against the backdrop of the conference, the Caisse de Dépôt et de Gestion and the EIB signed a statement of intent to work together to explore the setting-up of an new investment fund for encouraging the development of structured and professional mezzanine financing for Moroccan firms, while encouraging fresh investment and financial synergies in the Mediterranean Basin.
The Prime Minister’s Secretary of State Abderrazak El-Mossadeq, with delegated responsibility for economic affairs and modernization, welcomed the participants on behalf of the Moroccan government and voiced satisfaction that this conference was being held at a time when his government was pursuing a policy of bringing Moroccan industry up to first-world standards.
The conference was organized in close cooperation with the Confédération Générale des Entreprises du Maroc (CGEM) and through the efforts of its President, Hassan Chami.
Opening the discussions, El-Mossadeq outlined the measures taken by the government in connection with the launch of Morocco’s catch-up program. These highly specific measures are intended to help prepare Moroccan businesses to meet international competition in the run-up to the creation of a free trade area between Europe and the partner countries in 2010.
Alongside FEMIP, the European Commission (EC) also stands ready to support this process, as announced by Ambassador Sean Doyle, Head of the EC’s Delegation in Morocco.
Following a direct overview from business people active in Morocco, President of the EBRD, Jean Lemierre drew on the experience of European transition countries to stress the importance of modernizing the economies of the countries concerned and introducing the necessary structural reforms in order to underpin growth and attract foreign investment.
FEMIP involves the MPCs in its activities through its “Ministerial Committee” and its “preparatory meetings of experts”, as well as by establishing regional offices. It also aims at stepping up long-term lending and developing new products and technical assistance. For 2004, FEMIP is lining up financing operations totaling some two billion euros. — (menareport.com)
© 2004 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)