Morocco has become the 15th largest fruit exporter by value thanks to sales spurred by berries, mandarins, watermelons, avocados and oranges, the US Foreign Agriculture Service said.
The north African country has between 2016 and 2021 doubled its fruit exports from 729 million dollars to 1.5 billion dollars accounting for a third of its total farm exports in 2021, the US agency said in a report.
This performance came on the back of gains in berries (blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries), which now account for 60 percent of growth in fruit exports since 2016, the report says.
It also notes the significant contribution of watermelons, avocados and oranges and cites Morocco’s competitiveness in terms of advanced logistics that enabled the export of fastly perishable goods.
“The increase in fruit exports has been facilitated by recent investments in transportation infrastructure, which now enables perishable items to transit from the southern Sahara region to Spain within 48 hours of packing. Morocco has the largest container port in the Mediterranean, and investments have also been made in the construction of a new deep-water port in Dakhla in the Sahara region, projected to be operational by 2027,” said the report.
The report shows that 70% of Moroccan fruit exports went to the EU market, notably Spain and France, while the UK replaced Russia as the second largest market for Moroccan farm exports.
Canada and the United States each accounted for less than 5 percent. Morocco is the only country in Africa with which the United States has a free trade agreement.