MOROCCO – US-based manufacturer and distributor of agricultural equipment, AGCO has opened a regional office in the northeast of Casablanca, Morocco to serve the West and North African market.

The new office seeks to further consolidate the multinational’s market share in the continent following the launch of a head office in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 2017.

According to World Grain report, Nuradin Osman, AGCO vice-president and general manager Africa, said the expansion will also strengthen the company’s ability run its operations in the continent from within.

“The opening of the Casablanca office demonstrates AGCO’s strong commitment to ‘Run Africa from Africa.

“The continent is home to 60% of the world’s arable land and is thus expected to play a major role in future, global food security,” Osman said.

He further noted that the new office “not only builds on our presence at a sub-regional level but also underlines AGCO’s vision and strategy for advancing African agricultural prosperity.”

The region also presents a great opportunity for the expansion of Agri Parks, an AGCO initiative to develop integrated agricultural centers in Africa.

The initiative seeks to support the transfer of farming techniques and provide training, advice, equipment, crop storage, processing and logistics to the farming community.

“The Casablanca office will also serve as the headquarters for Agri-Parks, which represent a significantly fresh approach for agricultural production and rural transformation.

“The innovation of Agri-Parks is in developing infrastructure and community through agricultural mechanization,” Osman said.

Highlighting the broad scope of AGCO’s product and services offering, from a full range of farm machinery to grain processing and protein production systems,  the company seeks to provide the required technology, equipment and expertise for this networked approach.

Agri-Parks take a holistic approach to farm production, crop storage and processing by grouping together key activities in one location.

Alongside food security, Agri-Parks focus on the establishment of an integrated value chain from farm to fork instead of selling low-value crops.

A further aim is for the development of services such as agricultural contracting businesses to assist small-scale farmers in gaining access to modern machinery and technologies.

Notably, Morocco’s suitability as for AGCO’s news office is underpinned to both its geographical location on the North-West of the continent as well as its key socio-economic role in the region.

In 2016, morocco also returned to the African Union – a move that has also significantly contributed towards advancing economic integration of African countries.

The country also boasts of a vibrant agriculture sector which is a key contributor to Morocco’s economy, accounting for about 15% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and generating nearly 40% of employment.

The Kingdom’s national agricultural policy has played a key role in guiding sector development of the agri-food industry and especially though emphasizing agricultural machinery to upgrade farm equipment.