Morocco “shows the art of navigating global disorder”, underlines the U.S. Bloomberg agency, noting that the Kingdom “is walking a diplomatic tightrope that many middle-income nations in an increasingly polarized world, from South Africa to Brazil, are struggling to navigate.”
Despite being battered by the Covid-19 pandemic, rising US-China tensions and the war in Ukraine, globalization isn’t dead, notes Bloomberg, adding that a “burgeoning industrial zone outside the Moroccan city of Tangier offers a prime example”.
Morocco is home to Africa’s biggest car-assembly factory and is powered by investment from companies from Europe, the Middle East, China, Japan and the US, it says, recalling that King Mohammed VI conceived the Tanger Med port project 20 years ago. “Foreign investment flocked in, auto and aerospace industries took root, employing tens of thousands of young Moroccans, and local engineering schools thrived…it’s largely succeeded,” the U.S. media points out, noting that today, the port rivals the oldest maritime gateways in Europe as it has become one of the busiest and best in the Mediterranean. Besides, Morocco is building another massive port near the Mediterranean city of Nador, aiming to replicate the Tangier’s success.
The agency deems that Morocco, the oasis of globalization in North Africa, is well-positioned to keep attracting a diverse array of investments to the doorstep of Europe and Africa, and at a crossroads of commerce flowing between Asia, the Middle East and the Americas.
Corporations mainly from the West are already present in Morocco in droves and still moving in, riding the near-shoring wave, the media says, adding that just across the expressway from Renault SA’s 8,000-employee plant is the 1,500-acre Tanger Automotive City, which hosts dozens of companies like Michigan-based seating supplier Lear Corp. and French component maker Valeo.
Bloomberg notes that for years, big multinationals from Boeing and Airbus to Renault and Stellantis have helped the Moroccan economy add tens of thousands of new manufacturing jobs, and that these companies benefit from top-notch infrastructures like the high-speed train and wider highways that link the major cities.
Other companies, mainly Chinese, are starting to set foot in Morocco. A memorandum of understanding was recently signed between the Kingdom and the battery maker Gotion High-Tech Co to build a $6.4 billion factory for electric-vehicle batteries in Morocco, which would be one of the world’s largest, Bloomberg recalls, adding that a fresh momentum has also been given to Tanger Tech City, a “smart city” envisioned for perhaps 200 Chinese companies.
Touching on security issues, Bloomberg stresses that Morocco maintains strong security cooperation with the US and Europe, and that the Kingdom is designated as a “major non-NATO ally.”
The Kingdom hosts the US and NATO forces for “African Lion” training exercises each year, says Bloomberg, which underlines that at the same time, China’s economic presence in Morocco is growing. “Huawei and ZTE are aggressively recruiting engineers,” the U.S. agency notes, adding that among the newer operators in the auto cluster is the fiber-optic cable producer ZTT Group, an active player in Beijing’s grand plan to crisscross the planet with Belt and Road infrastructure.
Source: North Africa Post