Industry and Trade

Morocco to set up 80 companies in East Africa country

Last year, Rwanda and Morocco signed 23 bilateral agreements to promote trade and cooperation in different sectors.

East African state Rwanda has drawn the attention of potential investors with its futile breeding grounds of setting up businesses. Essentially, it is among the fastest growing countries in Africa continent with the favourable conditions of doing business in the country.

With this cutting edge over its neighbouring states, close to 80 companies from Morocco have shown interest in investing in Kigali capital. This would be a humongous boost should the interest be implemented in the EAC state.

The companies are particularly interested in the energy sector, finance, transport and logistics, information and technology, construction and real estate, among other sectors.

The firms were represented by a delegation of more than Morocco 100 executives who are in the country for the African Business connect summit, which took place in Kigali.

Zahara Maafiri, the Managing Director, Marco Export and the head of the delegation, said most of the business leaders visiting the country for the first time, were also interested in forging strong business links with their Rwandan counterparts.

They also want to explore and take full advantage of the economic potential that exists between the two countries, she added.

“We are deeply committed to our Sub-Saharan Africa partners, including Rwanda, and ready to engage in collaborations based on the knowhow from the two countries; this way, both countries will develop and defend the Made-in-Africa brand,” Maafiri said on the sidelines of the business summit.

The investors are, therefore, here to build sold bridges between the two countries for win-win partnerships, she added.

Last year, Rwanda and Morocco signed 23 bilateral agreements to promote trade and cooperation in different sectors.

They later formed a joint council and signed a partnership agreement in the presence of the leaders of the two countries, President Paul Kagame and King Mohammed VI, to enhance trade.

Business flows between both countries is currently at less than 1 per cent which makes many analysts view the latest efforts as an opportunity to increase trade volumes.

Emmanuel Hategeka, the chief operations officer, Rwanda Development Board, said Rwanda is creating opportunities for business communities to form strategic partnerships that will help enhance trade.

“Rwanda believes in the foundation that has been set by the two governments, which is anticipated to result into more trade opportunities for businesses. We will continue to identify and remove any barriers to trade to help attract more investors into the country,” he said, adding that the objective is to provide the most conducive business environment for local, regional and international investors.

Youssef Imani, the Moroccan ambassador to Rwanda, hailed the country’s business environment, saying his country is ready to step up trade and investment relations with in the region, focusing mainly on Rwanda.

“Morocco’s new strategy towards Africa is to enhance economic relations with African countries, eliminate poverty on the continent, and carry out a joint sustainable development policy together with other African countries,” he said.

Mohammed Benayad, the General Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Trade of Morocco, said supporting each other will help the two countries withstand the global economic meltdown and help drive inclusive growth.

Meanwhile, M’Fadel Elhalaissi, the Corporate Managing Director, BMCE Bank of Africa, said the bank is ready to support investors with the necessary credit to help promote investment between the two countries.

“Rwanda is ranked second most conducive environment to do business in Africa by the World Bank Doing Business report, this should be a reason investors from across the globe, including those from Morocco, should come and invest here,” he added.

“We don’t want to just sell our products but also invest in Rwanda,” he noted.

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