The president of the Moroccan-Saudi Arabian Business Council, Khalid Benjelloun, affirmed that Morocco and Saudi Arabia plan to launch a common fund to support small and medium-sized enterprises for export and investment, with the aim of increase the volume of bilateral trade.
In a statement to the newspaper “Iqtisad al Sharq”, Khalid Benjelloun stressed that the public and private sectors of the two countries should participate in the creation of the fund, in particular the Moroccan banks Attijariwafa Bank, Banque Populaire, Crédit Agricole du Maroc and Bank of Morocco. Africa, as well as the Saudi Investment Bank and the Islamic Corporation for Private Sector Development of the Islamic Development Bank Group.
He added, after the meeting of the Business Council held at the end of last week in Casablanca, that the fund “will serve as a one-stop shop to facilitate financing and logistics procedures to support the orientation of companies towards export and investment between the two countries.
According to data from the Ministry of Trade and Industry, trade between the two countries in 2021 recorded around 17.2 billion dirhams (1.7 billion dollars), of which 10 billion dirhams were destined for the import of oil and its derivatives from Saudi Arabia, the newspaper said, noting that Morocco aims to double the volume of its exports to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, to 5 billion dirhams against 700 million dirhams currently .
In this regard, Mr. Benjelloun pointed out that the possibilities for increasing trade between the two countries are “very great”, calling for overcoming administrative and logistical obstacles to bring bilateral trade to a higher level.
He explained that the economic relations between the two countries are characterized by “the predominance of hydrocarbons and agricultural products”, stressing that the objective is to work to diversify them further by simplifying administrative relations such as the mutual recognition of certificates. , and facilitating exchange operations through the launch of a direct shipping line.
During the last meeting of the Moroccan-Saudi Business Council, several Moroccan products likely to increase the volume of their exports to Saudi Arabia were identified, including textiles, handicrafts, auto parts, food products and technology products.
Regarding Saudi exports to Morocco, chemicals, oils and plastic products have also been identified.