Address: Front office : Twin Centre Tower A 6th floor Corner boulevard zerktouni and boulevard El Massira Casablanca Back office : espace ghazwani, Boulevard Ifni, Casablanca
Opening hours :Mon - Fri: 9am-12.30pm and 2pm-6pm Sat: 9am-12pm
Address: Front office : Twin Centre Tower A 6th floor Corner boulevard zerktouni and boulevard El Massira Casablanca Back office : espace ghazwani, Boulevard Ifni, Casablanca
Opening hours :Mon - Fri: 9am-12.30pm and 2pm-6pm Sat: 9am-12pm
Rate this article
6/ (99 votes )
Morocco’s increasing economy and position make it a desirable place for people and companies hoping to spread. In this Morocco business guide, we will go through all you have to know concerning initiating a business in Morocco, handling the Moroccan business ecosystem, and utilizing chances for growth.
Morocco is a North African country with a population of over 40 million. It has a diversified economy with several sectors contributing to its GDP, such as agriculture, industry, and services. According to the World Bank, Morocco’s GDP was $120.3 billion in 2020, and its GDP per capita was $3,222.
Morocco ranks 53rd out of 190 economies in terms of ease of doing business( In the World Bank’s “Doing Business 2023” report)
Morocco has ranked ahead of several other African countries, including Algeria, Egypt, and Nigeria. The report also highlighted some areas of improvement, such as enforcing contracts, getting electricity, and dealing with construction permits.
Starting a business in Morocco can be challenging, especially if you are unfamiliar with the local regulations and customs. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about starting a business in Morocco, including the various forms of company structures, tax, administration, and if you require a visa.
When setup business in morocco, choosing the right legal structure is crucial as it will determine the liability, taxation, and management of your business. Here is an overview of the main company structures in Morocco, along with a table comparing their key features:
A Sole Proprietorship (Entreprise individuelle) is one of the simplest and most common forms of business structure in Morocco. It is suitable for small businesses and individual entrepreneurs who want to establish their business with minimal legal formalities and start-up costs. Here are the main features of a Sole Proprietorship in Morocco:
a Sole Proprietorship in Morocco is a simple and cost-effective way for individuals to start their own business. However, the unlimited liability of the owner may be a significant drawback for some entrepreneurs, especially if the business carries substantial risks or financial obligations.
A Limited Liability Company (Société à Responsabilité Limitée, SARL) is a popular form of business structure in Morocco, offering limited liability protection to its owners and a flexible management structure. It is suitable for small to medium-sized businesses and is widely used by both local and foreign investors. Here are the main features of a SARL in Morocco:
SARL in Morocco is a flexible and widely used business structure, offering limited liability protection to its owners and allowing for relatively simple management arrangements. It is a popular choice for both local and foreign entrepreneurs looking to set up a business in Morocco.
A Joint Stock Company (Société Anonyme, SA) is a popular form of business structure in Morocco, particularly for large businesses and those seeking to raise capital through public offerings. It offers limited liability protection to its shareholders and has a more structured management and governance system compared to other company types. Here are the main features of an SA in Morocco:
A Joint Stock Company (Société Anonyme, SA) in Morocco is well-suited for large businesses and those seeking to raise capital through public offerings. It offers a structured management and governance system, along with limited liability protection for its shareholders. However, it may not be the best choice for smaller businesses due to its higher capital requirements and more complex regulatory and reporting requirements.
A Simplified Joint Stock Company (Société par Actions Simplifiée, SAS) is a relatively recent addition to the available company structures in Morocco. It offers flexibility in management and organization, along with limited liability protection to its shareholders. The SAS is suitable for businesses of all sizes and is particularly popular among foreign investors and joint ventures. Here are the main features of an SAS in Morocco:
a Simplified Joint Stock Company (Société par Actions Simplifiée, SAS) in Morocco is an attractive option for businesses seeking flexibility in management and organization, along with limited liability protection for its shareholders. It is particularly popular among foreign investors and joint ventures, as it offers a simpler and more adaptable structure compared to a traditional Joint Stock Company (Société Anonyme, SA).
A Partnerships (Société en Nom Collectif, SNC) is a type of business structure in Morocco that involves two or more individuals or legal entities joining together to carry on a business under a common name. SNCs are less common than other forms of business structures, such as SARLs and SAs, due to their unlimited liability for the partners. Here are the main features of an SNC in Morocco:
a Partnership (Société en Nom Collectif, SNC) in Morocco is a relatively simple and flexible business structure that allows partners to pool their resources and expertise. However, the unlimited liability of the partners may be a significant drawback for some entrepreneurs, making it less suitable for high-risk businesses or those with substantial financial obligations.
A partnership (Société en Nom Collectif, SNC) is a type of business structure in Morocco that involves two or more individuals or legal entities joining together to carry on a business under a common name. SNCs are less common than other forms of business structures, such as SARLs and SAs, due to their unlimited liability for the partners. Here are the main features of an SNC in Morocco:
An SNC can be dissolved for various reasons, such as the expiration of its term, the accomplishment of its purpose, the death or withdrawal of a partner, or the decision of the partners. The dissolution process involves settling the partnership’s debts and obligations, and distributing any remaining assets among the partners according to their respective shares in the partnership..
Here is a table that outlines the key characteristics of the most common company structures:
|Company Structure||Description||Liability||Capital Requirements||Formation Process||Taxation|
|Sole Proprietorship||A single individual owns and operates the business.||Unlimited (personal liability)||No minimum capital required||Simple and straightforward process; register with local authorities||Personal income tax|
|General Partnership||Two or more partners jointly operate a business, sharing profits and losses.||Unlimited (joint liability)||No minimum capital required||Sign partnership agreement and register with local authorities||Partners taxed on personal income|
|Limited Partnership||A partnership with one or more general partners and one or more limited partners.||General partners: unlimited (joint liability); Limited partners: limited to their capital contribution||No minimum capital required||Sign partnership agreement and register with local authorities||Partners taxed on personal income|
|Limited Liability Company (SARL)||A separate legal entity where partners’ liability is limited to their capital contributions.||Limited liability||MAD 10,000 (approx. $1,000)||Sign articles of association, register with local authorities, and obtain required licenses||Corporate tax; dividend tax for partners|
|Public Limited Company (SA)||A company with share capital divided into shares, allowing it to offer shares to the public.||Limited liability||MAD 300,000 (approx. $30,000)||Sign articles of association, register with local authorities, and obtain required licenses; public companies must also register with the stock exchange||Corporate tax; dividend tax for shareholders|
Please note that this table provides a general overview of the main company structures available in Morocco. It is important to consult with a local legal and financial expert to determine which structure is best suited for your specific business needs and circumstances.
First, dodge common errors entrepreneurs make when establishing a business in Morocco, , such as using a name that isn’t unique or is already in use in Morocco, or using a trademark so that later they get receive a letter saying they infringe on someone else’s on the trademark. To prevent this from occurring, you should choose a unique company name, and ensure social media and the domain name is available.
you can search ompic.org (to make sure no one uses this name in Morocco).
Nemechek ( for make sure u social media and the domain name are disponible )
you apply for the company name “negative certificate” at ompic.org :
To be registered, Moroccan businesses must provide a registered office address. There are two choices – rent premises or use a business centre. Domiciliation is the most common choice, as 72% of new companies in Casablanca use it during start-up, according to the Moroccan Association of Business Centres (AMCA).
Below is a table outlining the key aspects of signing a commercial lease and a domicile agreement in Morocco.
|Aspect||Commercial Lease||Domicile Agreement|
|Purpose||Renting a space for business operations||Establishing a legal address for the company|
|Duration||Typically 3 to 9 years, negotiable||Varies, usually based on an annual agreement|
|Rent Payment||Monthly or quarterly, as agreed upon||Monthly or annual, as agreed upon|
|Rent Increase||Usually indexed to changes in the cost of living||Typically subject to annual review and renegotiation|
|Security Deposit||Commonly required, equivalent to 2-3 months’ rent||May be required, depending on the agreement|
|Termination||Notice period specified in the lease agreement||Notice period specified in the domicile agreement|
|Maintenance & Repairs||Tenant responsible for minor repairs; landlord for major repairs||Varies, depending on the agreement|
|Use & Modifications||Limited to the agreed-upon commercial activity||Limited to establishing and maintaining a legal address|
|Sublease & Assignment||Subject to landlord’s approval||Usually not permitted|
|Taxes & Insurance||Tenant typically responsible for taxes and insurance related to the leased property||Varies, depending on the agreement|
|Legal Requirements||Lease agreement must be in writing and registered with local authorities||Domicile agreement must be in writing and registered with local authorities|
|Dispute Resolution||Negotiation, mediation, or litigation||Negotiation, mediation, or litigation|
The company’s rules are brought together in its statutes. This covers the partners’ relationship and with third parties. Specifically, outlined are:
This document can be drawn up in two ways:
It is advised to engage a professional to draw up, in order to ward off any likely difficulties or disagreeable shocks in the commercial court and, Don’t have issues when you wish to open a company bank account in Morocco.. Use of standard models (available on the web) is not sensible. These won’t tally with the individualities of your firm and its operational pattern.
Once the drafting of the articles of association is completed, the founding partners may sign the final bylaws without being physically present in Morocco or give power of attorney to a chartered accountant
A registration form (AAC050B-20I) for Professional Tax is made and sent to the Tax Administration in Morocco (https://tax.gov.ma/wps/portal/DGI/Accueil/). This will provide a Professional Tax (TP) registration certificate with a registration number and declared occupation which will be the basis of taxation.
Updates and changes: If your business circumstances change (e.g., a change in occupation, business address, or legal representative), you are required to notify the Tax Administration promptly. Depending on the changes, you might need to complete an updated registration form (AAC050B-20I) or provide additional documentation.
registering for Professional Tax (TP) in Morocco involves submitting the registration form, providing the necessary documentation, waiting for verification, receiving your registration certificate, and ensuring ongoing compliance with your tax obligations. By staying organized and informed, you can successfully navigate the TP registration process in Morocco and ensure your business remains in good standing with the Tax Administration.
To establish a company in Morocco, it must be registered in the Trade Register (RC). The court issues an excerpt from the RC containing a unique registration number as part of the process.
The necessary documents for registration in the commercial register in morocco are:
In Morocco, creating a company stamp is an essential step in establishing your business’s identity. A company stamp features the business’s name, logo, and other important information and is used to authenticate official documents.
Here is an insight into the process:
In Morocco, a Tax Identification Number (Numéro d’Identifiant Fiscal or IF) is crucial for businesses to comply with tax regulations and engage in various transactions. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to obtain a Tax ID (IF) number in Morocco:
Remember to regularly file your tax returns and stay informed about any changes in tax regulations to remain compliant and avoid penalties.
In Morocco, affiliating your company with the National Social Security Fund (Caisse Nationale de Sécurité Sociale or CNSS) is a legal requirement. The CNSS provides various benefits, such as healthcare coverage, family allowances, and retirement pensions, to employees and their families. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to affiliate your company with the CNSS in Morocco:
By affiliating with the CNSS and fulfilling your obligations as an employer, you contribute to the social protection of your employees and ensure a healthy and stable work environment.
transactions, and adhering to regulatory requirements. Follow these steps to open a business bank account in Morocco:
Choose a bank: Research various banks operating in Morocco and compare their services, fees, and account options to determine the best fit for your business needs. Some popular banks include Attijariwafa Bank, Banque Populaire, BMCE Bank, and Société Générale.
Collect the necessary documents: Prepare the required documents, which may include
By opening a business bank account in Morocco, you can manage your company’s finances efficiently, comply with local regulations, and establish a solid financial foundation for your business.
To submit the incorporation file to the Regional Investment Centre (CRI) in Morocco, you will need to follow these steps:
Note: The exact process and requirements for submitting an incorporation file to the Regional Investment Centre (CRI) in Morocco may vary, so it is important to check with the CRI for specific instructions and requirements.
In Morocco, the Central Register of Commerce (CRI – Centre Régional d’Investissement) is responsible for managing the registration of businesses and companies. If you wish to withdraw your company’s incorporation file or amend your registration details, you need to follow the necessary procedures.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to withdrawing your incorporation file from the CRI in Morocco:
Keep in mind that withdrawing your incorporation file can have legal, financial, and tax implications. Therefore, it is essential to consult a legal or financial advisor to understand the consequences of this action for your business.
legal advertising, also known as public notice or legal notice, is a requirement for companies in Morocco to inform the public and relevant stakeholders about specific company-related events or changes. These notices can be published in official gazettes or newspapers, ensuring that the information is accessible to the general public.
Some common reasons for legal advertising in Morocco include:
To publish a legal advertisement in Morocco, follow these steps:
Always consult with a legal professional when preparing legal advertisements to ensure compliance with Moroccan laws and regulations.
Once a company is established in Morocco, it must fulfill several legal, financial, and administrative obligations to remain compliant with the country’s laws and regulations. Here’s a summary of the key obligations a company must adhere to in Morocco:
To ensure compliance with these obligations, it is advisable for companies operating in Morocco to engage the services of legal, accounting, and tax professionals who can provide expert guidance on the relevant laws and regulations.
In Morocco, the Foreign Exchange Office (Office des Changes) is responsible for monitoring and regulating foreign exchange transactions and implementing the country’s exchange control regulations. Companies involved in international trade or transactions with foreign entities are required to report relevant activities to the Foreign Exchange Office.
Here’s an overview of the key reporting requirements for companies dealing with foreign exchange transactions in Morocco:
Gather relevant information: Collect the necessary information related to the foreign exchange transaction, such as transaction details, amounts, currencies, and counterparties.
Complete the required forms: Obtain and complete the appropriate forms for reporting the transaction to the Foreign Exchange Office. Forms can be found on the Office’s official website (www.oc.gov.ma).
To ensure compliance with Morocco’s foreign exchange control regulations, it is advisable for companies to consult with financial professionals or legal experts who can provide guidance on reporting requirements and other obligations.
When starting a business in Morocco, consider the following recommendations:
Engage a professional to conduct a preliminary study: Seek the assistance of a professional to assess the legal, social security, and tax implications of your business venture in Morocco.
Transfer initial capital in foreign currencies: To enjoy the benefits of freely transferring profits generated by foreign investments, foreign investors must transfer the initial paid-up capital in foreign currencies.
Avoid standard articles of association templates: Refrain from using generic articles of association templates that may not align with your company’s unique characteristics and operational model.
Draft a partnership agreement for multiple shareholders: If your company has several shareholders, it is advisable to create a partnership agreement to govern their relationships and responsibilities.
Choose a reputable business center: Ensure that the chosen business center is located in a well-known business area, has a solid reputation, and is unlikely to close unexpectedly. Exercise caution when signing a domiciliation agreement.
Hire an English-speaking advisor: Engage an English-speaking chartered accountant or corporate lawyer to assist with the incorporation process and prevent potential issues.
Protect your intellectual property: To avoid disputes, it is crucial to safeguard your business by registering a local trademark for your intellectual property.
By following these recommendations, you can enhance the success and stability of your business venture in Morocco while minimizing potential risks and challenges.
The cost of starting a company in Morocco can vary depending on the type of company, legal and administrative fees, and professional services required during the incorporation process.
In Morocco, companies are subject to various taxes depending on their nature, size, and activities. Below is a summary of the main taxes applicable to companies in Morocco:
Corporate Income Tax is applied to a company's taxable income. The tax rate depends on the nature of the company and its activities. The following table provides the CIT rates:
Type of Company Tax Rate in Morocco
Companies with a turnover below 5 million MAD10%Companies with a turnover between 5 million and 50 million MAD20%Companies with a turnover above 50 million MAD31%Banks, credit institutions, and insurance companies37%
VAT is a consumption tax levied on goods and services at each stage of the production and distribution process. The following table presents the VAT rates in Morocco:
Type of Goods/ServicesVAT Rate in Morocco
Basic food products, water, education, health, and transportation services0% (exempt)Agricultural equipment, certain pharmaceuticals, and press7%Most goods and services10%Alcoholic beverages, luxury goods, and specific services20%
Withholding Tax is applied to certain payments made by Moroccan companies to residents or non-residents, such as dividends, interest, royalties, and service fees. The rates may vary depending on the type of payment and the recipient's tax residence status.
Companies are responsible for withholding and remitting payroll taxes and social security contributions on behalf of their employees. The following list summarizes these contributions:
National Social Security Fund (CNSS): 12.11% employer contribution and 4.48% employee contribution
Pension and Disability Insurance: 7.93% employer contribution and 3.97% employee contribution
Health Insurance: 2.26% employer contribution and 0.51% employee contribution
Professional Training Tax: 1.6% employer contribution
Note: The exact rates and contributions may change over time and depend on the specific industry or sector. Always consult a tax professional or legal expert to ensure you have up-to-date information about the Moroccan tax system.
Yes, foreigners can own a business in Morocco. The country has made significant efforts to create an investor-friendly environment to attract foreign investment. There are no specific restrictions on foreign ownership, and non-Moroccan citizens can establish and own companies in most industries.
Starting a Limited Liability Company (LLC) in Morocco involves several steps. Please note that while the information provided below can be helpful, it's always recommended to consult with a local attorney or business consultant for up-to-date information and guidance tailored to your specific situation.
The most common types of legal entities in Morocco are SARL (Limited Liability Company), SA (Joint Stock Company), and SMEs (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises).
The minimum requirements for setting up a company in Morocco include having at least one shareholder, one director, a minimum capital requirement, and a registered office in Morocco.
The process for registering a company in Morocco involves several steps, including obtaining a business permit, registering the company with the trade register, obtaining a tax identification number, and registering for social security.
Companies in Morocco are subject to corporate income tax, value-added tax (VAT), and other taxes and duties depending on the type of business activity.
Some of the sectors with potential for investment in Morocco include renewable energy, tourism, agriculture, automotive, aerospace, and IT, green hydrogen, real estate,travel agency, import and export, car agency, hotel.
list of some American companies that operate in Morocco:
In Morocco, the legal form that is equivalent to a limited liability company (LLC) is called a Société à Responsabilité Limitée (SARL). A SARL is a type of company where the liability of the shareholders is limited to their capital contributions, and the company is managed by one or more managers who can be either shareholders or non-shareholders. The SARL is a common form of business in Morocco and is suitable for small and medium-sized enterprises.
With a budget of $17,000 USD, there are several business opportunities to explore in Morocco. Your decision should be guided by your skills, interests, and the local market demand. Here are some options to consider:
Small Café or Street Food Kiosk: Moroccan food is well-liked by both locals and tourists. With your budget, you can establish a modest café or street food stand, offering traditional Moroccan cuisine, fusion dishes, or international favorites.
Language Instruction Center: If you are proficient in multiple languages, consider opening a language school providing lessons in Arabic, French, or local dialects like Darija. Focus on individual or small group sessions to reduce overhead costs.
Artisanal Crafts and Souvenirs Store: Collaborate with local artisans to sell unique Moroccan handicrafts, mementos, and traditional clothing. Establish a compact retail space in a tourist-heavy location or utilize online platforms to reach a wider audience.
Budget Hostel or Guest House: Allocate your budget towards leasing or renovating a small property and transforming it into a hostel or guest house. Cater to cost-conscious travelers by offering clean and reasonably priced accommodations.
Digital Marketing or Social Media Management: If you possess expertise in digital marketing or social media, create a business that assists local companies in expanding their online presence. Such a business typically has low overhead costs and can be operated from home.
Niche Import/Export Business: With your available funds, initiate a small-scale import/export venture focusing on specialized products like artisanal items, textiles, or distinct food products. Be prepared to handle customs, shipping, and logistics.
Before embarking on any business endeavor in Morocco, conduct thorough market research, familiarize yourself with local regulations, and comply with any legal requirements. Networking with local business owners and entrepreneurs can also offer valuable insights and advice.
With $500 in a country like Morocco, you can start a small-scale profitable business. Here are a few business ideas that could work within your budget:
Food Stand: Start a small food stand selling traditional Moroccan food such as tagine, couscous, and street food items like sandwiches or kebabs. Focus on popular and affordable meals that cater to both locals and tourists.
Online Store: Set up an online store selling unique Moroccan crafts and artisan products like pottery, rugs, and textiles. Partner with local artisans to source products and promote your store through social media and targeted online advertising.
Tour Guide: If you have good knowledge of the local culture, history, and attractions, consider starting a tour guide business. Offer customized and small-group tours to tourists visiting Morocco, focusing on unique experiences like food tours, historic site visits, or cultural immersion.
Language Tutor: Offer language tutoring services to locals and tourists interested in learning English or another language you are proficient in. Conduct lessons online or in person at cafes or public spaces.
Mobile Phone Repair: Start a mobile phone repair service, as smartphones are ubiquitous and repair needs are common. Learn basic repair skills and offer affordable services in your local community.
Second-Hand Clothing Store: Collect gently used clothing from locals or purchase from thrift stores, and resell at a small second-hand clothing store or market stall. You can also offer clothing alterations or upcycling services to add value to the products.
Morocco is a vibrant country with a diverse economy, making it an excellent destination for starting a business. Here are some preferred places and ways to go about touring Morocco for this purpose:
Start in Casablanca: Casablanca is the commercial capital of Morocco and an excellent place to start your business tour. The city is home to many business districts and has a robust infrastructure that can support your business needs.
Visit Marrakech: Marrakech is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Morocco, but it also has a growing business community. The city has several co-working spaces and networking events that can help you connect with local entrepreneurs.
Explore Tangier: Tangier is located in the north of Morocco and is a bustling port city. The city has a strategic location and is home to several free trade zones that make it an ideal destination for international business.
Determining the best business to start in Morocco that will do well for the next 10 years is a complex question that requires careful consideration of many factors, including market trends, consumer needs, and government policies. However, here are some business ideas that have potential for growth and sustainability in the coming years:
Renewable Energy: Morocco has ambitious renewable energy targets and is investing heavily in this sector. Starting a business in renewable energy, such as solar or wind power, could have long-term potential as the country continues to transition away from fossil fuels.
Agriculture: Agriculture is a crucial sector in Morocco, and there are opportunities for businesses that focus on value-added products such as organic farming, food processing, and exportation of Moroccan agricultural products.
E-commerce: The pandemic has accelerated the growth of e-commerce in Morocco, and this trend is expected to continue in the coming years. Starting an e-commerce business that caters to local consumers or sells Moroccan products to the global market can be a lucrative opportunity.
Education: Morocco has a growing demand for high-quality education, especially in STEM fields. Starting a private school, offering tutoring services, or developing educational software can be a viable business opportunity.
Health and Wellness: With an increasing awareness of the importance of health and wellness, starting a business in this sector, such as a gym, wellness center, or nutrition coaching, can have long-term potential in Morocco.
It is important to note that starting any business requires careful planning, research, and execution, and success is not guaranteed. It is recommended to conduct a thorough feasibility study and seek advice from local experts before embarking on any business venture.
Yes, but you'll need to comply with the country's regulations and ensure that your products meet the necessary safety and quality standards.
Take the first step today and get your free consultation now! Unlock the potential for success for your new business in Morocco.Request a free quote now !