Nesrine Roudane Unveils Morocco’s New Investment Charter  

In our exclusive interview today, LegalcommunityMENA is privileged to engage in a conversation with Nesrine Roudane, Partner and Head of the Casablanca office at Al Tamimi & Company. Roudane’s wealth of experience, highlighted by her role as the Managing Partner at Roudane & Partners, showcases her prowess in business law and her commitment to legal excellence.  

As a distinguished figure within the legal landscape, Roudane provides unique insights into Morocco’s recent legal transformations, with a particular focus on the groundbreaking Investment Charter.  

Morocco recently implemented a new Investment Charter. Can you provide an overview of the key objectives and shifts from the previous framework? 

Absolutely. The new Investment Charter, Law Framework No. 03-22, marks a pivotal departure from its predecessor, focusing on nine core objectives. These include creating stable employment, reducing regional disparities, directing investments toward priority sectors, enhancing international attractiveness, and more. Unlike its 1995 counterpart, the new charter positions Morocco strategically as a gateway to Africa. 

How does the new Investment Charter differ in its approach compared to the previous one? 

Unlike the previous tax-centric focus, the new Charter adopts a holistic approach. Structured around three main axes, it prioritizes a Comprehensive Investment Support System, Business Climate Improvement, and Unified Governance, aiming for transparency and investor friendliness. 

Could you elaborate on the key features of each axis? 

Certainly. The first axis introduces four support mechanisms, including financial incentives, to back projects meeting specific criteria and promote investment in priority sectors. The second axis concentrates on improving the business climate through various priority areas, such as simplifying procedures, enhancing logistic competitiveness, and promoting access to green energy. The third axis emphasizes unified governance under the Prime Minister, ensuring efficient investment-related processes. 

What benefits do the new charter’s support mechanisms offer to investment projects? 

The support mechanisms offer a range of benefits, with grants reaching up to 30% of the investment amount. Common grants cover employment ratios, gender perspectives, job creation, sustainable development, and local integration. Additionally, territorial and sector-specific grants provide extra incentives based on location and industry. 

How does the government plan to implement and enforce the new Investment Charter? 

The government has repealed the previous framework and committed to publishing implementing texts according to a precise schedule. Strategic projects, international business expansions, and SME development are targeted with specific criteria for eligibility, ensuring the charter’s effective implementation. 

Could you shed light on the recent decrees signed by the government to complement the Investment Charter? 

Sure. Three decrees in March 2023 set thresholds for eligibility, established local integration requirements, and categorized provinces for territorial grants. Chapter 6 of the Charter outlines a timeline for additional legislative texts, addressing issues like financing access, logistics competitiveness, renewable energy, and land accessibility. 

What role do regional actors play in achieving the Investment Charter’s objectives? 

Regional actors, including Regional Investment Centers and Unified Regional Investment Commissions, play a crucial role in implementing policies at national and territorial levels. Their collective efforts, alongside governmental authorities and public entities, determine the success of Morocco’s comprehensive investment strategy. 

In conclusion, how does Morocco aim to position itself with this comprehensive investment strategy? 

By creating a favourable investment climate, Morocco aspires to be a hub for both regional and international investments, fostering economic growth and prosperity. The success of this strategy hinges on collaborative efforts and the effective implementation of policies across all levels. 

About Nesrine Roudane 

Nesrine, Partner and Head of the Casablanca office at Al Tamimi & Company since 2022, previously served as Managing Partner at Roudane & Partners, a firm she founded in 2008. With a background as an associate at a major Moroccan/French international law firm, Nesrine specializes in business law.  

As a Casablanca Bar lawyer, she advises and represents Moroccan and foreign entities in diverse legal matters, offering extensive expertise in civil, commercial, and criminal litigation. She is also recognized for her role as an arbitrator and commercial mediator accredited by various institutions, including the Casablanca Court of Appeals and WIPO. 

Throughout her career, Nesrine has actively contributed to the resolution of international commercial disputes and conducted mediation procedures, all while dedicating herself to educating corporate leaders on Moroccan legal compliance. She is also President of the Startup and Venture Capital Commission at the International Union of Lawyers (UIA).