Due to many factors including its proximity to Europe, highly skilled human capital, political stability, and free trade agreements with the USA, EU, and other countries, the Kingdom of Morocco has attracted many global automotive players over the last few years. For the year 2021, estimated passenger vehicle production was reported at 403,007 vehicles with some 175, 360 units sold locally whilst 358, 745 were exported. Renault and Stellantis are the main OEMs with CKD manufacturing facilities in the country, however local stakeholders are quite optimistic that other OEMs will soon establish manufacturing plants in the country.
Considering the status of Morocco as one of the most important automotive hubs in Africa , the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) and the African Association of Automotive Manufacturers (AAAM) organised a study tour to the Morocco to gain more insight into the automotive ecosystem. The VDA/AAAM delegation included Dave Coffey (CEO of AAAM), Victoria Backhaus-Jerling (Head of VDA-AAAM Project Office – South Africa), Issaka L. Tetteh (Project Manager – ECOWAS Region, VDA/AAAM Partner Africa Project – Ghana), Gino Singh (Supreme Springs – South Africa), and Jean-Philippe Marillet (Bosch – Africa). The delegation engaged with many key stakeholders in the country including Stellantis, Renault, the Ministry of Trade & Industry, the Moroccan Investment and Export Development Agency (AMDIE), the Moroccan Association for Automotive Industry & Car Manufacturers (AMICA), and Tanger Med Port.
During a roundtable hosted by the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (AHK) and the GIZ, the delegation had the opportunity to engage with component manufacturers in Morocco and discussed the further integration of Morocco in the African continent and trade between Europe and Africa. Morocco has performed well in the localisation of the value chain with over 250 leading automotive suppliers; they have identified a further 30 specific products for priority localisation. . Despite the good progress made by Morocco in both vehicle and component manufacturing, there are still abundant opportunities for investors in the automotive value chain in the country. Moreover, the transformation of minerals in Morocco and from Africa for consumption in Morocco is an area that will certainly be explored.
Developing value chains in Africa is essential for the growth of the automotive industry on the continent. Regional integration and value chains will only develop when leading car manufacturing countries in Africa such as South Africa, Morocco and Egypt support other auto progressive African countries such as Ghana, Tunisia, Kenya, Rwanda, and Cote d’Ivoire to jump-start their respective automotive industries through investments and the sharing of knowledge. Moreover, the coming into effect of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) offers an excellent platform for the development of regional value chains in Morocco and on the continent. VDA/AAAM will continue to collaborate with stakeholders in Morocco and across the globe to develop the automotive industry in Africa.