Economy

Morocco Attracted $3.2 billion of Foreign Direct Investments in 2015

Geneva - Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) Flows to Morocco Remained Sizable at $3.2 billion in 2015, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) said in its “World Investment Report 2016”.

“The country continues to serve as a major manufacturing base for foreign investors in Africa: in 2015 it attracted large amounts of FDI in the automotive industry, especially from France. Real estate developments in the country also attracted FDI from West Asia,” the report pointed out.

FDI flows to Africa fell to $54 billion in 2015, a decrease of 7 per cent over the previous year, the source noted, adding that an upturn in investment into North African economies such as Egypt was offset by decreasing flows into Sub-Saharan Africa, especially in natural-resource-based economies in West and Central Africa.

Lacklustre economic performance pushed FDI to a low level in South Africa, traditionally one of the top recipients in the region, the report said, noting that despite the depressed global economic environment, FDI inflows to Africa are expected to rise in 2016, due to liberalization measures in the region and some privatization of State-owned enterprises.

North African firms are playing an active role in outward FDI, the report stressed, adding that outward investment increased from Libya and Morocco.

The increased outward FDI from Morocco is largely intra-African and reflects the increasing capabilities of Moroccan firms in financial services, telecommunications and manufacturing, according to the report.

The biggest rise in prospective investments are in North African economies such as Egypt and Morocco, but a more optimistic scenario also prevails more widely, for example in Mozambique, Ethiopia, Rwanda and the United Republic of Tanzania.

Investment into Africa’s auto industry is driven by industrial policies in countries such as Morocco, growing urban consumer markets, improved infrastructure, and favourable trade agreements, the report said, adding that major automotive firms are expected to continue to expand into Africa: PSA Peugeot-Citroen and Renault (France) and Ford (United States) have all announced investments in Morocco; Volkswagen and BMW (Germany) in South Africa; Honda (Japan) in Nigeria; Toyota (Japan) in Kenya; and Nissan (Japan) in Egypt.

Recovery in FDI was strong in 2015, the source said, adding that global foreign direct investment (FDI) flows jumped by 38 per cent to $1.76 trillion, their highest level since the global economic and financial crisis of 2008–2009.

A surge in cross-border mergers and acquisitions to $721 billion, from $432 billion in 2014, was the principal factor behind the global rebound, the source noted, adding that the value of announced greenfield investment remained at a high level, at $766 billion.

With MAP

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