The Agri-food sector plays a key role in national food security and industrial sovereignty, said Friday in Casablanca, the Minister of Industry and Trade, Ryad Mezzour.
This sector is characterized by its strategic importance and its essential role in the response to the health crisis linked to the coronavirus pandemic (covid-19), which has enabled the Kingdom to ensure food security throughout the national territory. , argued Ryad Mezzour during a working meeting with members of the National Federation of Agri-food (FENAGRI).
And to continue: “The sector is evolving with the emergence of new sectors with high added value. We have great potential in Morocco, called today to keep pace with global changes, to meet the expectations of consumers who have become demanding both in terms of quality and price ”. Ryad Mezzour, in this sense, explained that the development of the sector is based on strengthening its competitiveness and its positioning both on the local market and on export. “We must continue our momentum and focus on growth drivers by developing new niches while capitalizing on our potential and on our national and regional know-how which has made the reputation of + Made in Morocco +”, assured Ryad Mezzour .
The sector’s development roadmap responds to the challenges it faces. “One of its major challenges is to contribute more to the food security and industrial sovereignty of the Kingdom, in accordance with the High Guidelines of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, may God assist him”, underlined the minister, affirming that the dynamics of the sector must be supported by the reinforcement of the integration of value chains for a better valuation / transformation of local resources.
“This will allow us to create more added value and jobs,” he noted, adding that operators must develop human resources, modernize and innovate production tools in order to respond to changes. technology and industry trends. “To win in the face of fierce competition whether in the local or foreign market, you have to distinguish yourself by quality and diversity”, added Ryad Mezzour. In this regard, he called on industrialists in the sector to subscribe to a sustainable development approach that meets global requirements, starting with decarbonization. “We are not faced with choices, but with vital constraints. The future of the sector depends on it and we will be at your side to achieve it ”. For his part, the President of FENAGRI, Abdelmounim El Eulj, underlined the starting point, through this meeting, of a common development between the supervisory ministry and the processors of agrifood products, noting that several challenges await the sector. in the next.
After noting the need to encourage the agri-food industry so that it can play its role effectively, Abdelmounim El Eulj noted the main issue affecting the sector, which was discussed with the Minister during the meeting, namely the integration of agricultural upstream and industrial downstream which prevents the full development of the industrial fabric.
A strong link in the national industrial chain, the agrifood industry has experienced significant development under the Program Contract (2017-2021). Equipped with a key dimension, it employs 19% of the industrial workforce, achieves an export turnover of 15% in industry and an added value of 25% of industrial GDP.
As such, 301 investment projects amounting to 8.65 billion dirhams (MMDH) were financed by the Industrial Development and Investment Fund (FDII) and the Agricultural Development Fund (FDA) to generate 22,311 jobs.