Morocco offers benefits to foreign firms
Since the outset of this year, small French and Spanish firms have raided the Moroccan market. This trend was recently confirmed by the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Morocco (CFCIM).
So far this year, 1,100 companies established branches in the Moroccan market, nearly 1,050 of them are SMEs. Hatim Benjelloun, CEO of the Public Service and Affairs (PAS) explained that this trend was boosted by the European crisis as well as by the attractiveness of the Moroccan market. According to him, has emerged as a safe haven amid the global economic crisis.
In other words, "our country faced the crisis by posting a 4% growth in 2010," said Benjelloun. In fact, the slowdown of foreign direct investment in 2010 did not prevent the decline of unemployment rate to a record low. According to Benjelloun, this is the direct effect of a enhanced public investment policy to strengthen infrastructure and to promote diversification of the economy. The success of this strategy is likely to advance human development indicators in the country.
"The signals are clear and the green lights are given for investment," Hatim Benjelloun has recently told Les Echos. "Despite the crisis, major projects continue. This is the factor that benefited our country and helped to attract foreign investment. Currently, all investors are wondering how we were able to overcome this crisis and how to do business as well," he added.
Sector-wise, the most attractive fields to foreign SMEs were infrastructure sectors, construction, renewable energy and tourism infrastructure. Generally, these companies specialize in business outsourcing. They bring with them the expertise that local companies do not have. Most of the foreign SMEs settle in the port city of and in the south of the country. However, the economic context and experience dictate some of these investors to locate in and .
According to Benjelloun, the red tape involved in the daily activity of the company remains the main obstacle that makes foreign investors reluctant. However, the establishment procedure is extremely fast compared to other Arab and African countries. The creation of a company in does not require more than 12 days, while in neighboring countries such as and the process of creating a company is up to one month.
At the legal level, the foreign investor can opt for an LLC. 90% of businesses started by foreign investors are this type. "The creation of the latter requires only a minimum capital of 10,000 dirhams," said Amine Baakili, auditor. He adds, "This amount has already broken the barrier to the initial investment."
Thus, unlike a corporation, the LLC is under no obligation to report the public as its turnover does not exceed 50 million dirhams. It should be noted that a foreign investor can own 100% stake in his company. He does not need a local partner. Regarding taxes, offers rebates that favor investors, particularly in terms of the imposition of tax. (Source: english.nuqudy.com)
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