Morocco named among 50 Most Innovative Economies in the World
Results Reflect Morocco’s Success in Implementing King Mohammed VI’s Vision for Modern, Growing Economy
AA – Moroccan American Center for Policy (MACP) — Morocco was again named among the 50 most innovative economies in the world and one of just two such economies in Africa by the 2017 Bloomberg Innovation Index released Tuesday.
The Index evaluated over 200 world economies before trimming the list to 78 that had data on at least six of seven factors: research and development (R&D) intensity, defined as research and development expenditure as a percentage of GDP; manufacturing value-added; productivity, defined as the GDP/GNI per employed person age 15+; high-tech density, capturing the proportion of domestically domiciled high-tech public companies such as aerospace and renewable energy companies; tertiary efficiency, reflecting enrollment in tertiary education; researcher concentration, or the percentage of the population involved in R&D and patent activity per the population.
Morocco’s highest rankings were in the areas of R&D intensity, manufacturing value-added, and high-tech density, reflecting the North African country’s success in implementing its longtime strategy to develop its auto and aerospace manufacturing sectors, as well as its leadership in renewable energy development.
According to Morocco’s Minister of Industry, Trade, Investment and the Digital Economy Moulay Hafid Elalamy, Morocco’s aeronautics industry has grown by a factor of six in just a decade, and today boasts 121 companies. In September 2016, the Kingdom and Seattle-based aerospace company Boeing announced plans to establish a Boeing industrial ecosystem in Morocco that will bring 120 Boeing suppliers to the country, create 8,200 skilled jobs, and generate $1 billion in exports. Meanwhile, Morocco is now home to the world’s largest solar power plant. Indeed the 2016 Climate Performance Index ranked Morocco among the top ten countries making the most progress in addressing climate change and number one among “newly industrialized countries,” citing the country’s commitment to generating 42% of its energy needs from renewable sources by 2020. (This number was since raised to 52% by 2030.) And reflecting Morocco’s commitment to R&D, King Mohammed VI just last week inaugurated the Mohammed VI Polytechnic University, a hub for research, training and innovation in Benguerir, Morocco.
The Bloomberg Index is also just one of many industry and business reports of recent years awarding Morocco high marks. In September last year, the World Bank’s 2017 “Doing Business” report ranked Morocco 68 out of 190 countries in ease of doing business—a two-spot gain over the previous year—making it number one in North Africa and fourth overall in the greater Middle East/North Africa region. KPMG International and Oxford Economics’ 2015 Change Readiness Index (CRI) ranked Morocco as the most “change-ready” country in the Maghreb, with particularly positive results in the category of “enterprise capability.” And in 2014, the Wall Street Journal’s Frontiers/FSG Frontier Markets Sentiment Index reported that Morocco is among the top ten frontier markets—and the only one in the Maghreb—most favored by foreign corporations.
“It’s no surprise that Morocco’s economy was ranked among the most innovative in the world,” said former US Ambassador to Morocco Edward M. Gabriel. “Under the leadership of King Mohammed VI, Morocco has been implementing an aggressive, long-term economic vision to enhance its business environment, improve citizens’ quality of life, and become an engine of growth and development in Africa.”
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