MOROCCO – Moroccan food processor, Copag, has invested 197 million dirhams (US$20.8 million) in the establishment of two industrial units in Taroudant, in South-Eastern Morocco.

The units specialize in the production of processed cheese and citrus juice, in a bid to meet the growing demand of the products in the local market, but also contribute to the development and transformation of local agricultural production.

Also, the venture seeks to export high-value, locally produced agri-food products to international markets and is set to create 380 direct jobs and more than 2,200 indirect jobs.

The project was supported by the Industrial Development Fund (FDI), in line with the implementation of the development strategy for the agro-food industries of the Souss-Massa region, signed before His Majesty King Mohammed VI, January 28, 2018 in Agadir.

“These projects are an eloquent example of the dynamics experienced by the dairy and citrus processing industries in Morocco in terms of investment and job creation and the enthusiasm that Made in Morocco arouses among our industrialists.

“In tune with the sector’s development priorities, these investments are likely to strengthen integration between upstream agriculture and downstream processing, as well as value chains.

“This further contributes to the food security and industrial sovereignty of our country, in accordance with the High Royal Guidelines,” said Morocco’s Trade and Industry Minister, Ryad Mezzour.

Mr Mezzour highlighted that the government will continue to support and accompany operators and their investments, aimed at promoting even more competitive, diversified and high-value local production, able to meet the needs and requirements of the Moroccan consumer and establish themselves on the market.

As part of this vision, another memorandum of understanding was signed between the ministry and Copag for the realization of a new industrial project intended for the valorisation and the transformation of white meats.

This project, estimated to cost 108 MDH (US$11.3m), will allow the creation of more than 200 direct jobs and 300 indirect jobs, reports Morocco Site.

It will contribute to the promotion of local meat through the development and manufacture of high value-added products as well as import substitution.

Over the past two decades, Morocco has been actively working to upgrade its industrial sector and diversify its economy.

The vision was translated into a number of industrial acceleration plans including the 2014-2020 Industrial Acceleration Plan (PAI) and its second phase, the 2021-2025 Industrial Acceleration Plan (PAI).

The program’s main objectives were to enhance Morocco’s industrial landscape and to boost sectoral competitiveness. The private sector is the main beneficiary of the program.

The program also extends to Small and Medium-Size Enterprises (SMEs), as it aims to facilitate the process of creating businesses and to support women-led business initiatives.

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