UPDATE 1-Renault and partners to invest $1 bln in Morocco

Fri Apr 8, 2016 2:32pm EDT
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By Aziz El Yaakoubi

RABAT, April 8 (Reuters) - French carmaker Renault and component suppliers will invest 10 billion dirhams ($1.04 billion) in Morocco to build an "industry ecosystem", the country's industry minister said on Friday.

Renault's ecosystem and its new plants will raise Renault's local sourcing of components to 65 percent from 32 percent and are projected to generate 20 billion dirhams in revenues, Moulay Hafid Elalamy told Reuters.

Renault already has two car plants in the kingdom. It has a modern plant in Tangier producing cars and body pressings for export and anoher, older assembly plant in Casablanca.

"Renault ecosystem means that around Renault plants in Tangier and Casablanca, many other companies are coming to invest and make the parts that will shape a Renault car," the minister said, though he declined to say to give an exact figure on Renault's investment in the project.

The director of the company's Africa, Middle East and India region, Bernard Cambier, also declined to give details but said that at least 15 component makers are commited to invest in the project.

Cambio and Elalamy signed the deal inside the royal palace in Rabat.

Renault's Tangier car factory, the biggest in North Africa, required initial investment of 600 million euros ($683.70 million) and is expected to reach an annual production capacity of 400,000 vehicles in the coming years.   Continued...