The World Bank Board of Directors today approved $250 million for the Northeast Morocco Economic Development Project.
This financing will help improve transport connectivity and encourage private sector growth in this territory, particularly around the development of the Nador West Med (NWM) industrial-port complex. Northeastern Morocco presents challenges, but also important opportunities .
The region suffers from geographical isolation, natural disasters, climate threats, the depletion of mineral resources, the underdevelopment of the industrial fabric and the weight of the informal sector.
Recognizing the untapped potential of the region, Moroccan authorities are implementing a major infrastructure investment plan, including the development of the NWM complex, which includes a deep-water port and industrial zone, as well as interventions aimed at improving the economic environment. region of. The new World Bank project supports this initiative and contributes to the realization of territorial development efforts.
“This project, in line with the reforms of the New Development Model, will allow the territorial development process to begin and reduce geographical disparities with the objective of sustainable and resilient territorial development, strengthening competitiveness. Its objective is to promote greater prosperity for the region by creating favorable conditions for job creation by the private sector and opening prospects for economic inclusion. Developing the skills of residents, especially women and youth in rural areas, will strengthen local capacities and social cohesion,” says Jesko Hentschel, World Bank Director for the Maghreb and Malta.
The project consists of three main components: the strengthening of an integrated approach to territorial development in the Northeast region, the development of the private sector and the improvement of road infrastructure. The project will finance the development of a roadmap for priority investments, the rehabilitation of 500 kilometers of rural roads and the strengthening of the capacities of 5,000 young workers, in particular targeting women and youth in rural areas.
It will also support reforms aimed at increasing private investment by $30 million in the region and rehabilitating 170 kilometers of main roads.
“By supporting better land use planning, strengthening workforce skills, developing the local private sector and investing in transportation infrastructure, this project will boost the economic potential of northeastern Morocco and improve the overall investment climate.” says Anne-Cécile. Souhaid, World Bank senior transportation specialist and project manager.