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SPECIAL REPORT INCENTIVES


ITWOULDBE DIFFICULT TO FIND READY PREPARED SITES OUTSIDE SPECIAL ECONOMICZONES INMOROCCO


advantages including incentives and services to support their operating needs. But with more than 5000 SEZs across the globe, competition for investment is fierce, heightened further by the economic fallout from Covid-19. “Attracting international compa-


Theone-stopshop C


TANGER MED OFFERS A ‘SINGLE WINDOW’ FOR INVESTORS WITH INCENTIVES AND SUPPORT. ALEX IRWIN-HUNT REPORTS


ompanies that set up in dedi- cated special economic zones (SEZs) are afforded a host of


and licenses to be based in one of the Tanger Med activity zones Marc Nassif, CEOof Renault’s


Moroccan operations, says that TMZ is an agency that is “fullyempow- ered” to provide investing companies all the support they need (see inter- view on page 104). Since its inception in 2007, a


total of Dh98bn ($10.74bn) has been invested in Tanger Med’s port and industrial platform, more than 37% ofwhich came from the public sec- tor, according toTMSA figures. On top of these investments, the


nies can be challenging for all world free zones, and to lead this challenge, we had to come up with an attractive financial regime for companies, along with other services provided by the law,” says Jaafar Mrhardy, general director of Tanger Med Zones (TMZ), the network of activity zones in Morocco’s northernmost region (see interview on page 100). TMZ offers a host of incentives to


investing companies, including exemptions on registration and stamp duties during the acquisition of land, and exemptions on both business and patent taxes for 15 years. TMZ also provides exemptions on corporate income tax for five years and a reduced rate of 8.75% for 20 years thereafter.


Singlewindow TMZ acts as a ‘one-stop-shop' which investors can approach to obtain the necessary permits, authorisations


108


Moroccan state offers subsidies for industrial operators through the Hassan II Fund. This provides investment grants of up to 20% on a project’s total costs, for the acquisi- tion of land and construction of production units. Other funds, such as the fund for automotive operations and FDI fund, can also offer support.


Servicesandsupport TMZ has multilingual support teams that directly engage and assist investors, with an additional team of more than 100 engineers coming from Tanger Med Engineering, another subsidiary of TMSA, on site to support companies in specialised technical areas. This includes aftersales follow-up and a gate access platform, which enables convenient logistics access for com- panies hoping to export through Tanger Med port. The one-stop shop offered by


TMZ, with the option to have either ready-built facilities or greenfield


sites, makes it particularly attractive given themountainous terrain of northernMorocco. “It would be difficult to find


ready prepared sites, with the rele- vant infrastructure, site boundaries and right topography outside spe- cial economic zones in Morocco,” says Alex Ash, a global director of location strategy and incentives at site selection consultancy Hickey and Associates. “Tanger Med Zones fully sup-


ports its investors,” says Mr Mrhardy, adding that assistance is also pro- vided to companies in their search for talent to run their operations, through educational institutions. Serge Giannitrapani, general


manager of auto part manufacturer Marelli’s operations in Tanger Med Automotive City, says thatTMZ has been a reliable partner and provided “many valuable contributions, such as advice about the local regulations, support in the field on specific sub- jects, interface on road blocks in case of possible difficult situations and mutual exchanges on best practices”.


Viral reaction Beyond the standard services and support thatTMZ offers its tenants and clients across the industrial plat- form, it has stepped up to absorb the economic shock of the pandemic. It contributed €30mto the


National Moroccan Covid-19 Fund, whose purpose is to support compa- nies directly affected by the pan- demic, specifically tailored to start- ups and small and medium-sized enterprises.■


www.fDiIntelligence.com December 2020/January 2021


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