27 March 2013

Morocco: France Wants to Increase Its Role in Moroccan Energy Projects - AU Fait

Casablanca — During the third edition of the Attijariwafa Bank Economic Conference, which took place in the Hyatt Regency hotel in Casablanca, French ambassador Charles Fries expressed France's intention to increase its investments in the Moroccan renewable energy sector.

While Spain is Morocco's #1 trading partner, France is the country's leading overall economic partner, with trade and investments between the two countries totaling 8 billion euros. In order to preserve this position, the ambassador stressed the importance of getting involved in new strategic sectors, like renewable energies. The ambassador also announced French president Francois Hollande's intention to address the French and Moroccan business community on his first trip to Morocco scheduled April 3rd.

"If our companies are already well represented in the wind power space, we want to get more involved in the Moroccan solar projects", said Ambassadors Fries, who hopes France can secure a position in the Ouarzazate solar station's second round of tenders.

Last month, French group GDF Suez announced that it was going to build and manage Africa's biggest wind power station, the 300 megawatts plant in Tarfaya, in partnership with local company Nareva Holding. The project is estimated to cost around half a billion euros, and will be GDF Suez's biggest investment to date in wind power energy. It is expected to be operational by the end of 2014.

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