Focus on Manufacturing, Renewable Energy, and Gateway to Africa
The private sector complement to the third Morocco-US Strategic Dialogue, the US-Morocco Business Development Conference, will be held in Rabat April 11-13 featuring site visits that will connect participants to several of the premier business opportunities in the country.
The three highlighted themes of the conference are energy, manufacturing, and doing business with Africa, areas in which Morocco is both a regional and international leader.
With the largest wind farm and solar facilities in Africa, as well as an automotive and aeronautic manufacturing sector that is now the #1 contributor to the country’s GDP, Morocco continues to demonstrate both its commitment and progressive leadership in building a dynamic and deep culture of economic development that impacts business opportunities across Africa and into Europe and the Middle East.
This year’s program is designed around the reality that better information and direct contact with potential partners will greatly encourage trade and investment decision-making. Moroccan participants will include industry leaders, key government decision-makers, representatives of trade and investment promotion authorities, and industry specialists who will provide data on specific opportunities in Morocco.
From an American company perspective, Morocco’s diverse business community and environment are key attractions for doing business. From start-ups, to SMEs in the supply chains in the industrial sectors, to large multinationals based in the industrial estates that dot Morocco’s business and technology parks, there are potential partners in both scale of business and company specialization.
Rabat, the capital city and host for the conference, is undergoing significant developments in infrastructure, housing, and technology and industry facilities. The organizers want to show off its extensive tourism facilities that make the country a rapidly growing destination for more than 11 million visitors annually. With Mediterranean and Atlantic coastlines, mountainous and desert interiors, and a vibrant cultural heritage, it is not surprising that dozens of movies are made in Morocco each year.
The plenary sessions, panel discussions, and presentations by companies operating in Morocco on April 12 will give participants ample opportunity to meet with their counterparts and gain insights into how their companies can take advantage of Morocco geography, skilled human resources, and government incentives to do business across a range of opportunities. Whether for export to the EU, Middle East, and Africa, or for importing innovation technology for water and energy management, enhanced agricultural production, or supporting the industrial estates, Morocco is a welcoming host for US companies. The US cohort will be led by Marcus Jadotte, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Industry & Analysis, who spoke as the recent bilateral business conference in Atlanta.
Of importance to US companies is that Morocco is the only country in Africa with a Free Trade Agreement as well as a business center, the Casablanca Finance City Authority, dedicated to promoting trade and investment with Africa. Site visits on April 13 include traveling to Tanger on the Atlantic coast to visit Tanger-Med Port, the new leader in transportation and logistics facilitation in the region, as well as Tanger Automotive City and other sites in the north.
Those interested in renewable energies, in addition to meeting with companies in Rabat, will have the opportunity to visit the Noor 1 CSP Solar facility, the largest in Africa, which is in the same area as the film industry location in Ouarzazate.
There is much to be gained from taking in Morocco, for business and for enjoying its hospitality.