RABAT (Reuters) – Morocco signed new investment deals on Thursday worth $180 million with five automotive cable suppliers as it pushes to meet the growing demand from electric vehicle makers, industry minister Ryad Mezzour said.
Under the deals, Japan’s Yazaki will set up a new wiring plant worth $38 million in Tangiers and expand its existing factories in Kenitra and Tangier for $40 million, a company representative said during the signing ceremony.
Japan’s Sumitomo also said it will expand its electic harness plant in Casablanca in a $15 million investment.
During the same event, U.S. auto parts maker Lear said it will set up a plant for electric cables in Meknes totalling $20.6 million and a new terminals and connectors plant in Tangier for $28 million.
Germany’s Stahlschmidt said it will launch a plant making cables and locking systems in Tangier for $11 million.
TE connectivity said it will set up a connectors moulding and assembly plant worth $20.8 million in Tangier.
The automotive ecosystem topped Morocco’s exports for the last seven years with sales totalling $8.6 billion in 2021, up 16% from a year earlier.
Morocco is home to production plants of French carmakers Renault and PSA. Morocco’s total car exports were 358,745 vehicles in 2021, up 18% from 2020.
Morocco plans to increase its car production capacity to 1 million vehicles annually, from 700,000 currently, which includes 40,000 electric vehicles, said Mezzour.
Locally-made parts now represent 63% of Morocco-exported cars, he said.
(Reporting by Ahmed Eljechtimi; Editing by Frances Kerry)