The special zones are also meant to boost exports and curb imports in order to ease the country’s trade deficit.
The decision was made in 2016 in a business charter that commits to establishing new economic areas to attract foreign firms to Morocco’s 12 regions and help spread industry throughout the country.
The zones will be sector-oriented following a cluster model so that firms operating in the same areas can create interdependent systems to strengthen manufacturing capabilities.
The strategy is part of the industrial acceleration plan, which also provides for setting up industrial clusters or ecosystems by 2020 building on decades of experience in the field.
According to the US development agency the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MMC), the country has over 100 industrial zones, although a large number of them require an upgrade.
The recent decision to turn the Tangier Tech City into an economic free zone is in line with the country’s industrialization strategy. The new zone is expected to attract major Chinese companies in the automotive, aeronautical and textile sectors.
The city worth 1 billion dollars will help create 100,000 jobs as Chinese companies are expected to bring 10 billion dollars in investments.
As a whole, the Tangier area will be one of Africa’s most vibrant manufacturing hubs building on friendly legislation and business climate and robust infrastructure as well as proximity to Europe.