Economy:Italian exports to Morocco +90% in 10 years

'Ample growth in Italian PMI, SRM study

06 June, 18:51

    (ANSAmed) - Rome, June 6 - Italy's small and medium businesses are looking to Morocco for growth after a dramatic increase in exports there in the past decade.

    This is the conclusion of 'Italian business in Morocco' a study conducted by SRM, which produces socio-economic research on the Mediterranean, presented today at the International Institute of Business (IAI) in Rome.

    The data presented some significant and unexpected results. "Morocco has been seen traditionally as a location for holidays, not to do business," said Pier Luigi D'Agata, director-general of Confindustria Assafrica and the Mediterranean.

    However Massimo Deandreis, director general of SRM said: "Italy is one of the principal commercial partners of the kingdom, the fourth among European nations. The first for obvious historical and cultural reasons is France".

    Compared to the French, Italian companies have been able to gain margins for growth in Morocco both for products and joint ventures to penetrate the African continent.

    "Between 2000 and 2012 Italian exports to Morocco nearly doubled - the rate of growth was 90%," said Luca Forte, head of the Mediterranean Observatory of the SRM.

    This positive trend was also confirmed in the early months of 2013.

    "Compared to the same period of 2012, the first quarter of of the current year saw an increase of 24%," the research said.

    In terms of percent, Italy has done better than France which between 2000 and 2012 grew around 30%.

    But if we look at total value, "Italian exports were worth 1.4 billion euros compared to 4 billion for the French", according to the research.

    There is an important message for economic policy with the comparison to the French as there are interesting prospects for Italy in Morocco, particularly in relation to agricultural and food products.

    The study surveyed all 140 Italian companies operating in Morocco that account for 8% of the foreign firms there and have a total of 7,000 employees.

    Their total turnover is around a billion euros a year while the French have around 1,000 firms with a total turnover of nearly 24 billion euros.

    The stability of Morocco and the rate of growth in both the population and GDP - expected to rise 5.5% in 2013 - are the main attractions for Italian companies to Morocco (ANSAmed).

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