Rabat – The Japanese group JTEKT Corporation opened a new plant in Tangier Automotive City on Wednesday, October 9.
The new production site for steering systems, worth MAD 220 million, covers an area of 11,300 square meters.
State Secretary to the Minister of Industry Othman El Ferdaous said during the inauguration that the JTEKT group plant has created 90 jobs in the automotive industry and spare parts sector in Morocco.
“The factory is not only dedicated to the manufacture of automotive plants but also a school for Moroccan workers, which Japanese investors consider highly competent and in line with technological developments,” El Ferdaous said.
The executive director of the Japanese company Hirofumi Matsuoka said that the new plant is JTEKT’s “first industrial site on the African continent, expressing the group’s ambition to expand further in order to become the leader in Africa in terms of steering systems production.”
The factory is using the latest technologies, he said.
The executive director said that PSA Group in Morocco is the largest customer for JTEKT.
Ambassador of Japan to Morocco Takuji Hantani attended the inauguration event.
The group announced the start of construction works in September 2018.
Minister of Trade and Industry Moulay Hafid Elalamy said last year that the company invested around €20 million for the construction of its new plant.
JTEKT’s plant is expected to start production in 2020 and aims to produce 300,000 units in its first year.
With over 45,600 employees, the Japanese manufacturer has more than 136 subsidiaries in 27 countries around the world. In 2017, JTEKT had a turnover of €11 billion.
The group’s determination to put its new Africa-based plant in Morocco reflects the country’s potential as a promising market for the automotive industry.
The industry is one of the pillars for Morocco’s economy as it creates more jobs than other sectors.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade said that between 2016 and 2018, the industry created 116,611 jobs, representing 28.8% of all new jobs in the time period.