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    Morocco Promotes Tourism Investment at Expo 2020 Dubai

    Morocco’s favorable economic climate enabled the country to rank second among the best investment destinations in Africa.

    14 Oct 2021

    Rabat – The Moroccan Agency for Tourism Development (SMIT) organized “Morocco Tourism Day” conference on October 11 at the Morocco pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, with the event serving as a platform for meetings and exchanges around investment opportunities in the North African continent.

    Imad Bergad, Chairman of the Management Board of the SMIT, inaugurated the conference by announcing that Morocco offers a broad number of opportunities to investors interested in the African market.

    The SMIT further reassured foreign investors from the Gulf countries of the business climate offered by Morocco and expressed its keenness to promote the country, especially its southern provinces, as a business destination.

    Moroccan private and public operators from the tourism sector along with international leaders seized the opportunity to discuss investment opportunities and business climate offered by the North African country.

    The panel was moderated by several international actors in the tourism industry, including Jochem-Jan Sleiffer, President of the Hilton Group’s Middle East, Africa & Turkey branch, and Marloes Knippenberg, CEO of Kerten Hospitality.

    During the conference, Hamid Bentahar, President of the National Confederation of Tourism (CNT), introduced investors to the new promising tourism projects Morocco is looking to launch post-COVID to meet the new trends in the sector.

    Meanwhile, Emirati panelists such as Khalid Anib, CEO of Abu Dhabi national hotels, and Fardan Al Fardan, SEO of Embassy Capital, focused on investors' perception of investments’ profitability in the tourism sector in emerging countries, such as Morocco.

    They also explored the types of measures emerging countries typically undertake or implement to boost their attractiveness to investors.

    All panelists agreed that the first signs of recovery and revival of the tourism industry are remarkable, and that Morocco represents a promising region of tourism-related business opportunities.

    Bentahar further emphasized that the COVID-19 crisis has been an opportunity for the sector to reflect on what has been done so far and to seek collaboration between public and private tourism operators to bring their expertise to the table.

    With the cities of Marrakech, Agadir, and Essaouira being the main tourist destinations in Morocco, SMIT continues to invest in the ochre city which has managed to become a brand on its own, hosting various international festivals and attracting many investors globally.

    Younes Hajoui, SMIT’s Director of Investment Development, stressed that some of Morocco’s most attractive cities still require SMIT’s help to support several projects that are currently under implementation.

    Recalling British billionaire Richard Branson's recent visit to Dakhla, Hajoui highlighted the coastal city as a gathering spot for wind sports enthusiasts, emphasizing its development prospects in recent years.

    “Morocco Tourism Day” is part of the Morocco Now initiative, the new investment and export brand Morocco recently unveiled to pitch its globally competitive, sustainable, flexible, and dynamic business environment to foreign investors.

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