The Moroccan Investment Development Agency (AMDI) was completely revamped in 2009 to facilitate foreign investment into Morocco, and to launch outbound marketing using the agency’s seven foreign bureaus.

AMDI’s purpose is two-fold. It provides advice and orientation for foreign investors interested in Moroccan opportunities, and promotes Moroccan interests abroad to identify and convince foreign investors to start businesses in Morocco. All AMDI services are free.

The agency endeavours to provide the best environment for the successful development of new businesses. To do this, it provides investors with key information about:

  • Specific investment opportunities
  • Regulatory changes
  • Administrative procedures
  • Local partners

AMDI is organized into three divisions. The investment division does the ground work for foreign investors who are prepared to set up a business in Morocco. It can assist them with administrative procedures, as well as market research or financing. The business development division promotes Morocco outside the country, and a third division offers support services.

Different specialities

Agency specialists work in several key areas the government has identified for priority development. Among these are experts in automotive, aeronautics, renewable energy, offshoring and outsourcing (that is, call centers and back office operations), agroprocessing and textiles.

AMDI publications cover several aspects of doing business in Morocco. These are available free for digital download at the Invest in Morocco website (www.invest.gov.ma), which is available in French and English. Choose “Our Services” in the top menu and “Publications” on the drop-down menu.

The 36 publications available for download cover the legal and fiscal aspects of doing business in Morocco, the investment incentives and taxes, among other matters. Other publications analyze various economic sectors. Most publications are available in English and French, and some are translated into Spanish or Arabic.

Linked to others

AMDI2AMDI works closely with other government agencies, such as those that operate in tourism, solar and renewable energy, agriculture and the Tanger Med Free Zone special development agency. These close ties can simplify and accelerate matters for investors.

Another group of AMDI partners are the 16 Regional Investment Centers (CRI for their French abbreviation). These centers develop inbound foreign investment for specific regions.

Some regional specialities have already taken shape. For example, the aeronautics cluster is located near Casablanca in the town of Nouaceur. The automotive hub is in Tangier. Renewable energies are more dispersed but the Region de l’Orient (on the Mediterranean Sea) has developed a strong position.

One-stop shop

AMDI can provide answers for foreign investors on several matters, such as financing. AMDI does not provide direct financing itself, but it has privileged access to many of the top actors in the Moroccan financial sector. This includes traditional retail and investment banks, private equity players, the Casablanca Stock Exchange and several government-backed programs for which companies with Moroccan partners may qualify.

Regarding setting up a company, AMDI has outlined the ten steps required (see chart below). When it comes to government aid or incentives, AMDI can help identify assistance that may be available for a specific type of project.

It can also provide information about government assistance for training and continuing education. This includes both upfront and ongoing training for the six sectors that Morocco has identified as Metiers Nationaux (priority professions) – offshoring, automotive, aeronautics and aerospace, electronics, textiles and leather goods, and agro-processing.

The agency can also provide detailed information about the various free trade or special economic zones that Morocco has developed throughout the country. In addition, AMDI provides regular updates on the cost of key manufacturing inputs such as labor costs and utility rates. This information is available on their website under the “Invest in Morocco” tab.

Lastly, via its AfterCare branch, AMDI provides followup assistance to foreign investors after their setup in Morocco. This illustrates AMDI’s commitment to longterm relationships – something that helps explain the high rate of renewal investments. ●

AMDI