Investment charter: what the draft framework law says

After several dozen versions, the work on which began under the leadership of Moulay Hafid Elalami, the investment charter will see the light of day under the leadership of Mohin Jazuli.

Draft Framework Law No. 03-22, which forms the Investment Charter, was finally adopted by the Government Council, then by the Ministers, and entered the Parliament this Friday, July 22. What a reform promises a revolution State policy on development and investment attraction.

This large-scale reform concerns both the investment support mechanism itself and measures aimed at increasing the Kingdom’s attractiveness, the preamble to the text states.

The text consists of six sections: general provisions; investment support schemes; various measures of investment support; guarantees provided to investors; investment management; Settlement of Disputes.

As for investment support mechanisms, it consists of the main mechanism and separate mechanisms. The main mechanism is aimed at supporting investment projects that meet the specified criteria, at reducing disparities between the provinces and prefectures of the Kingdom in attracting investments, and at developing investments in priority areas of activity. As for specific mechanisms, they generally support investment projects of a strategic nature, very small, small and medium-sized enterprises and the development of Moroccan companies at the international level.

Details of investment support schemes

The main device includes:

total investment premiums is granted to investment projects according to the criteria defined by the regulation. These awards are granted to investment projects for which the total amount or number of stable jobs to be created is greater than or equal to thresholds established by the regulation.

an additional investment bonus known as a “territorial bonus”granted to investment projects carried out in provinces or prefectures, the list of which will be determined by a regulatory act.

The bill stipulates that when an investment project is carried out in the territorial jurisdiction of two or more provinces or prefectures, the territorial bonus shall be granted in proportion to the total amount of investment made in each of the respective provinces or prefectures.

an additional investment bonus known as a “sector bonus”granted to investment projects implemented in priority areas of activity, the list of which will be determined by the regulation.

When an investment project is carried out in two or more sectors of activity, the relevant investor can benefit from this bonus only once, corresponding to the sector of activity in which the largest part of his total investment is made.

Specific measures intended for investment projects of a strategic nature, for very small, small and medium-sized enterprises and for the development of Moroccan companies at the international level:

>> System for strategic investment projects:

An investment project can be qualified as strategic if it performs one or more criteria established by the regulation. Projects under defense industry are automatically considered as strategic projects.

These projects can benefit from specific negotiating advantages. The text states that a specific project support mechanism qualifies as a strategic and main support mechanism do not accumulate.

>> Device designed for very small, small and medium enterprises:

As part of this draft framework law, the state undertakes

    • continue the reform of the financial sector by creating support mechanisms and guarantees aimed at facilitating access to financing for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises;
    • to take measures in favor of these companies in terms of access to public procurement, strengthening of production capacity, training and support
    • introduce a special support mechanism intended for very small, small and medium-sized enterprises, the terms of implementation of which are established, depending on the circumstances, by legislative or regulatory means.

>> A device designed to encourage the development of Moroccan companies internationally

A special support system aimed at encouraging the development of Moroccan companies abroad will be created, the terms of which will be established by regulations.

Any investor who wishes to take advantage of the main or specific support mechanism must conclude an investment agreement with the state which defines, in particular, the mutual obligations of the state and the investor and the terms of their fulfillment.

The draft law stipulates that the basis for calculating and the size of the single investment premium, territorial premium and industry premium shall be established by legal acts. These bonuses are cumulative between them within 30% of the acceptable investment amount.

However, the total amount of investment grants granted to investment projects carried out in the field of energy production from renewable energy sources cannot under any circumstances exceeds the amount established by regulations.

Land, logistics, energy… The state undertakes cross-cutting measures

In addition, the draft charter defines other measures of investment support to achieve the main goals of the state’s activities regarding investment development, improvement of the business environment and investment promotion.

These measures address cross-functional sectors that affect the company’s competitiveness.

Thus, the state seeks to facilitate investors’ access to easily mobilized land at competitive prices. To this end, measures will be taken to stimulate:

– planning, development and operation of industrial, logistics, trade, tourism and service areas that meet the needs of investors;

– development of land plots intended for investment projects that create added value and stable jobs.

He also undertakes to take the necessary measures to:

– to reinforce competitiveness of the logistics sector,

– to reform the energy sector and promote the use of renewable energy sources,

– introduce a training offer, initial and permanent, adapted to the needs of companies.

– to promote scientific research activities and facilitate access to new information technologies and communication.

– work for diversification of financing methodssimplifying access to the capital market and implementation of innovative financial solutions.

– to provide speeding up the process of simplifying administrative procedures related to the realization of investments and their dematerialization.

– to continue its policy regarding deconcentration of management decisions and management acts related to the investment act.

The statute enters into full force one year after its promulgation

The text defines implementation frameworks with short deadlines. Realization main support device and special support device applicable to investment projects of a strategic nature, should be within a period not exceeding three (3) months from the date of publication of the framework law in the Official Bulletin ;

Realization special support device intended to stimulate development Moroccan companies abroador will be done for a period not exceeding nine (9) months from the same date;

Finally, the implementation of the special support mechanism intended for very small, small and medium-sized enterprises must be carried out within a period not exceeding twelve (12) months from the same date.

State goals in terms of investment

In its first article, the draft law defines the main goals of the state’s activities in matters of development and investment promotion. They are fixed as follows:

– creation of stable jobs;

– reduction of disparities between the provinces and prefectures of the Kingdom in attracting investments;

– orientation of investments on priority fields of activity and professions of the future;

– increasing the attractiveness of the Kingdom with the aim of establishing it as a continental and international center of direct foreign investment;

– encouraging the export and development of Moroccan companies at the international level;

– encouragement of substitution of imports by local production;

– improving the business environment and facilitating the investment process;

– increasing the share of private, national and international investments in the total volume of investments.

It also defines the principles on which the state’s policy on development and investment attraction is based:

– freedom of entrepreneurship;

– free competition and transparency;

– equal treatment of investors regardless of their citizenship;

– legal certainty;
– principles of proper management.