The EBRD has invested 1.6 billion euros in the private sector in Morocco

Wednesday, June 8, 2022

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development's (EBRD) cumulative investments in the private sector in Morocco have reyached 1.6 billion euros since 2012, said on Tuesday in Marrakech Antoine Sallé de Chou, EBRD director for Morocco.

"Over the past 10 years, we have invested more than 3.2 billion euros in Morocco, including more than 1.6 billion euros in the private sector," said Sallé de Chou who was speaking at a panel, organized as part of the 31st EBRD General Assembly.

The EBRD is the most active financial institution in Morocco, he said at this panel under the theme "EBRD: Successful investment in Morocco", noting that the Bank provides funding but also offers advisory services including small and medium enterprises (SMEs). 

He raised in this sense that the Bank has supported nearly 700 SMEs in Morocco since the beginning of its activities in 2012 in the Kingdom, stating that 72% of SMEs that have benefited from the advice have been able to increase their turnover, creating a total of 320 million euros of additional turnover. The official also highlighted the tangible results of the Bank in terms of investment in the "green sector" in the Kingdom as well as the opportunities of this sector in particular in decarbonization, water conservation and the deployment of new green technologies.

In addition, Sallé de Chou stressed the importance of strengthening social cohesion and reducing regional disparities for a more inclusive growth.

For his part, Adil Chikhi, Director of Industry, Trade and Agribusiness in the South and East Mediterranean (SEMED) at the EBRD noted that SMEs are at the heart of the Bank's activities, adding that the EBRD ensures that its offerings to this category of companies can grow.

In this sense, he stressed the importance of advice for these companies, especially in terms of technical assistance. "If the company does not have access to the right expertise and technical know-how, it will not be able to achieve its high potential," he said to this effect.

Chikhi noted in this regard that the EBRD ensures that its products are tailored to the needs of these companies on the ground "at the right time and at the right speed".

For his part, Hassan Belkhayat, investor of Southbridge A&I said that Morocco is a great country for investment, adding that it has a significant investment rate given the factors of stability, geographical position, infrastructure and skilled labor.

The country is safe to invest, he said, pointing to successful foreign investment in the agricultural, industrial, automotive and offshoring sectors.

He also noted that the Kingdom has responded well to the pandemic in terms of banking and financing (guarantees provided in this regard), adding that "from the point of view of a private investor, it is reassuring to see that the state supports the private sector in case of big shocks".

Placed under the high patronage of King Mohammed VI, the 31st General Assembly of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, which continues until May 12 in Marrakech, brings together representatives of the Bank's 73 countries and institutional shareholders, including Morocco.

The first physical gathering of the EBRD since Sarajevo in 2019, this event, under the theme "Meeting Challenges in a Turbulent World", is an opportunity to discuss global issues such as supporting economic growth, combating climate change and strengthening the business environment in the regions where the Bank invests.

In conjunction with its General Meeting, the EBRD will host its Business Forum, an ideal platform to explore investment opportunities and build lasting business relationships.

Business Forum panels will focus on digitization, sustainability and the transition to a green economy, mobilizing private capital, equality and inclusion, and other topical issues.

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