MOROCCO – The European Investment Bank (EIB) has inked a €200 million (US$235m) loan agreement with Morocco’s long-standing financier in the agricultural sector, Crédit Agricole du Maroc (CAM), to boost support for businesses operating in the agriculture and bioeconomy sector with a particular focus on sustainable development.
According to EIB the credit line’s primary objective is to assist Morocco in rolling out its new “Green Generation 2020-2030” agricultural strategy whose aim is to generate jobs and added value.
“The support lent by the EIB and CAM to Morocco’s strategic vision for its agricultural sector, as embodied in the “Green Generation 2020-2030” programme.”Aziz Akhannouch – Morocco Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries, Rural Development, Water and Forests.
It will provide financing for the value chains present in all types of agricultural production, with an impact on every aspect of the related ecosystem i.e. production, storage, logistics, packaging, packing, processing, marketing, etc.
All food production segments, upstream and downstream including farms, agricultural cooperatives, economic interest groups, small and medium-sized enterprises and micro-enterprises, are eligible for the funding, indicated EIB.
EIB will also mobilise additional resources to support CAM and its clients by providing specific technical assistance.
This will support the digitalisation of the sector and the use of “big data”, in addition to helping develop environmentally friendly measures and action.
“The support lent by the EIB and CAM to Morocco’s strategic vision for its agricultural sector, as embodied in the “Green Generation 2020-2030” programme.
“This agreement marks the first step towards making “Green Generation 2020-2030” a reality since its launch by His Majesty King Mohammed VI in February,” said Aziz Akhannouch, Morocco Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries, Rural Development, Water and Forests.
This funding is also part of the European Union’s fight against the coronavirus pandemic and, more specifically, chimes with Team Europe, an EU initiative set up to help partner countries, in particular countries outside Europe, in combating this public health crisis and mitigating its economic and social impacts.
“The private sector is a priority for the EIB. We attach particular importance to this area and, through this partnership, would like to support small and medium-sized enterprises in a key sector for the Moroccan economy.
For us, this is a strategic partnership with a major player in the financing of Morocco’s bioeconomy. Given the challenges we are facing at such a critical time for us all, we are making every effort to support Morocco’s economy,” EIB Vice-President Emma Navarro said.
The chairman of Credit Agricole, Tariq Sijilmassi, also welcomed the signing of the EIB agreement, saying that the deal is a “first step” between the two banks to build a solid and lasting partnership in favor of Morocco’s agriculture and the rural world.
“We wish to further strengthen our support to the agricultural sector which remains the absolute priority of our Bank, and, above all, to mobilize more resources to support the new agricultural strategy of the country,” Sijilmassi said.
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