The Business Year

Mehdi Tazi

MOROCCO - Economy

Mehdi Tazi

General Vice President, General Confederation of Moroccan Companies (CGEM)

Bio

Mehdi Tazi graduated from Télécom Paris Sud and received an MBA from the European Institute of Business Administration (INSEAD). He began his professional career in KPMG Consulting France in 1999 and joined Saham Group as development director in 2005. In 2008, he was appointed managing director of Isaaf Mondial Assistance, a subsidiary of the group, after serving as deputy managing director for 14 months. In 2014, he became the CEO of Saham Assurance after spending 3 years as managing director. Between 2010 and 2017, he was a board member of several insurance companies of the group. He also held the position of CEO of GA Angola Seguros from 2013 to 2014. He was recognized by the Jeune Afrique Group as among the 25 young African leaders in 2013 and among the top 50 disruptors in 2020. He was chosen to be amongst the Top 10 economic leaders of the continent by the prestigious Choiseul Institute for three consecutive years from 2014 to 2016. He was vice president of the Moroccan Federation of Insurance and Reinsurance Companies and president of the Royal Moroccan Sports for All Federation.

CGEM has worked hard to establish itself as the official representative of the private sector to public authorities, social partners, and national and international institutions.

What is the mission of CGEM?

Created 74 years ago, CGEM has established itself as the official representative of the private sector to public authorities, social partners, and national and international institutions. It gathers today more than 90,000 members through its 37 sectoral federations and 13 CGEM regions. CGEM ensures that the voice of the Moroccan private sector is heard on multiple subjects such as taxation, financing, business environment, social dialogue and climate change, particularly through the CGEM-Government work platform and its parliamentary group within the House of Councillors. It also played a key role in supporting the survival of Moroccan businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic, as part of its mission within the Economic Watch Committee (CVE). On an international level, CGEM works, through its 60 bilateral business councils, to promote and create opportunities for national companies in foreign markets and contributes to the promotion of Morocco as an investment destination and a hub for Africa.

CGEM speaks on behalf of more than 90,000 direct and affiliated members. What were your actions to assist businesses during the pandemic?

Since the first case of COVID-19, Morocco’s public and private sectors mobilized quickly and concretely to manage the crisis. This quick and efficient response, under the leadership of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, has been widely hailed internationally. CVE was created to support companies operating in sectors suffering because of the pandemic. It put in place several support measures including an unemployment compensation, the postponement of key payment deadlines, the launch of adapted loan products such as Damane Oxygène and Damane Relance. It has also established program contracts to help businesses operating in the sectors that were severely affected by the crisis. CGEM also played a major role in the management of the crisis by developing a participatory and integrated recovery plan, making strong recommendations for the amended 2020 Finance Law and the 2021 Finance Law, and coordinating the massive screening campaign among companies of the private sector. Today, we have moved to a new level in the management of the pandemic, through a large and well-coordinated vaccination campaign.

CGEM has prepared a White Book for the implementation of the Moroccan New Development model (NMD). What exactly is it about?

Aware of its central role in building a prosperous and inclusive society, CGEM mobilized very early on to elaborate on the private sector’s vision for NDM that it presented to the members of the Special Commission on the Development Model (SCDM) in February 2020. As implementation has now begun, we also wanted to contribute to this phase in a positive, participatory, and constructive approach. In this spirit, we have launched CGEM’s White Book that proposes concrete implementation measures to enable our country to achieve a steady and sustainable growth generating added value and job opportunities for Moroccans. This book, which is structured around a set of articles, is also a platform for all the confederation’s dynamic forces—federations, CGEM regions, commissions, and parliamentary group—to share their visions on various economic and social issues.

Are your priorities in line with the new government’s program?

The new government’s program is ambitious and full of challenges ranging from the establishment of stronger social equity to stimulating economic growth and creating jobs. The priorities we have suggested within our White Book are fully in line with the announced plan from the government, and we remain committed to work hand in hand with the government in implementing these priorities. For the plan to be a success, our partnership needs to be reinforced through an honest debate, the composition of strategic sectoral taskforces, and a results-oriented approach, where we will pilot projects within a defined range of actions and scale upon success. The private sector expects to see rapid actions toward a favorable business climate that will reinstate trust within the economic fabric of our nation.

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