Morocco is a regional commercial center with good conditions for attracting investments. The Kingdom pursues an economic policy that attracts many countries of the world to open businesses in the region. Its geographical location serves as a bridge between the West and Africa, as well as between the countries of the Middle East and the United States. Thanks to this, Morocco can attract various foreign investments, which allows it to establish itself as an international leader in economic terms. For businesspersons willing to enter the local market, company registration in Morocco is a smart decision. In this article, we will look at the main aspects of starting a Moroccan business and the benefits of operating a venture there.
Advantages of Moroccan company registration
- Entrance to North-African market: Given its proximity to Spain and the sizeable population of French speakers, Morocco is an obvious choice for EU businesses expanding into the region and seeking a nation with an alluring holding company regime for their regional HQs.
- Labor-intensive services: Many EU businesses, particularly those with operations in France and other French-speaking nations, have moved their call centers, clothing factories, and other labor-intensive manufacturing operations to the Kingdom.
- Setting up a business is simple for a noncitizen because foreigners are not obliged to create a joint venture in order to carry out business in Morocco, unlike many other Northern African and Middle Eastern nations, such as Algeria, Libya, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
- To carry out the registration of a company, foreigners are not subject to higher capital requirements than locals in most industries.
- Even though the Moroccan Business Registrar takes longer to register businesses than developed countries like New Zealand, France, Singapore, or Hong Kong, it is still far quicker than other nations in the North African region.
- Morocco is now ranked by the World Bank as the 43rd best country in the world for the ease of starting a business, ahead of the United States (55), Italy (98), or Switzerland, for the reasons outlined above (81).
- Despite the high ordinary corporate income tax rate of 30%, foreign businesspersons can take advantage of the following tax breaks:
- Businesses operating in Morocco’s free trade zones enjoy a five-year tax holiday.
- Foreign businesspeople who complete the registration of companies in Morocco may also qualify for “Casablanca Finance City” status, which entitles them to two benefits: up to five years of corporate tax holidays; and a permanently reduced CIT rate of 10%. After that, they pay a reduced tax rate of 8.75% for the subsequent twenty years.
- Investment holding, financial services, human resources, legal, and other professional services are all eligible operations;
- Morocco has signed double taxation avoidance agreements with at least 50 countries, including Singapore, Switzerland, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, and the United Arab Emirates, among many others;
- Numerous other industries enjoy tax advantages, such as agriculture, which may be permanently tax-exempt, and hospitality and tourism, which may enjoy five years of tax holidays before a permanently reduced rate.
Types of legal structures available
The SARL or LLC is the organizational form that businesspeople most frequently use to set up a business in Morocco. A SA or PLC can be formed by those seeking to make significant capital contributions. Branch offices and liaison offices may also be established by overseas organizations seeking to form their presence in the country.
Businesspeople starting Moroccan SMEs primarily chose the LLC as an organizational structure. This form may be founded by: two stockholders; and one director, who may be foreigners and non-residents too. Even though there is no obligation for a min. paid-in capital, it is customary to require US$1000, with 25% of that amount being paid at the registration stage.
For businesspersons wishing to create large-scale establishments, the PLC or SA is advised. At min. five stockholders and three directors must be appointed for this structure. They are not obliged to be Moroccan residents and may be of any country. A PLC needs a capital of at min. US$30,000, of which 1/4 must be repaid at the time of company formation.
Corporations from other countries wanting to conduct Moroccan business are permitted to open branches there. This organizational form is subject to Moroccan law as well as the law of its jurisdiction of origin because it is not deemed to have a distinct legal personality.
Firms from other countries are eligible to set up local offices as persistent Moroccan operations. It is not a distinct legal organization and is banned to carry out any profitable or business activity. This firm is obliged to enroll with the Moroccan business register and is only permitted to carry out the following: discovering the target market, data gathering; and product promotion.
Requirements for company registration in Morocco
The very process only lasts approx. nine days. The requirements for Morocco company are outlined below. An entrepreneur must:
- Complete company name registration in Morocco. This procedure costs MAD 230 and takes around a day.
- Pay registration fees and stamp duties. This likewise costs approximately MAD 30.
- Subscribe for taxes and get SSN.
How do I register a company in Morocco?
Business formation only necessitates US$1,000+ (MAD10,000) of which only 1/4 must be paid-up before an entity is formed. You need to decide on your business’s senior management, office, and legal responsibilities.
What is RC in Morocco?
Numéro RC or CRN is a unique code that helps quickly and correctly identify an entity. It is assigned upon registration.
How do I start a LLC in Morocco?
Step 1: Selecting a legal form
Step 2: Arranging a lease
Step 3: Setting up a commercial bank account
Step 4: Provision of the relevant documentation to CRI
Step 5: Reporting to the Foreign Exchange Office
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