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Business Envoy May 2022

Australian expertise delivering energy and water solutions for Morocco

Morocco and Australia have similar agricultural economies and water supply challenges. Both share a commitment to green energy and lowering their carbon footprints. Australian expertise is well regarded in Morocco, giving Australian companies the edge in providing the skills to help develop the local energy and water sectors. Australian businesses in Morocco include ship builder Austal, Fortescue Future Industries, Rubicon Water and Samex Australian Meat Company.

Morocco is keenly focussed on the transition to sustainable development and is determined to achieve energy sovereignty as rapidly as possible. A Ministry for Energy Transition and Sustainable Development was recently established, and Morocco is launching studies to build the country's first LNG terminal. The pace of green energy investments is also accelerating, with the aim of rapid decarbonisation of its two largest industries: phosphates and fertilizers.

Morocco is determined to reduce energy consumption by 20 per cent by 2030 and wants 52 per cent of the national electricity mix to be made up of renewables by this date. Morocco's geography provides advantages in wind and solar generation and there is significant green hydrogen potential. A Green Hydrogen Roadmap is in place, and the government is aiming to attract major international investments in this sector. Green hydrogen is particularly important to produce green ammonia, a necessary step in decarbonising the phosphate industry.

The government is also stepping up its investment in water infrastructure, both to meet demand generated by green energy projects, and to respond to a serious drought this year. As part of a program running until 2027, the government passed a USD2.8 billion budget for water infrastructure for 2022. This year, for example, the government will work towards the construction of 13 new dams, and the development of water resources including two desalination plants in Casablanca and Safi. The former will be the largest desalination plant in Africa.

We're very bullish on opportunities for Australian firms in high agtech solutions in Morocco. Maximising water and improving yields are key priorities for the Moroccan government. There's a lot of understanding of Australia's expertise in this area.

Michael Cutts, Australia's Ambassador to Morocco



View of wind power turbines along an unsealed road in Morocco
Wind power is a promising sector for renewable energy generation in Morocco.
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