Event Reports

How can Special Economic Zones lead to Growth and Integration in North Africa?

International Workshop

“How can Special Economic Zones lead to Growth and North Africa“? This was the leading question that was being addressed in our International Workshop taking place in Rabat, Morocco.

Special Economic Zones (SEZs) are often used as a proving ground for reforms that can then be spread to the broader economy, and so generate greater employment, exports, foreign direct investment (FDI) and other benefits. Therefore, SEZs are seen as inciting regional integration and supporting overall economic development in North Africa.

Distinguished experts from the wider MENA region and international institutions shared their experiences and ideas for the establishment of Special Economic Zones in North Africa and how this in turn spurs regional integration and supports development for the North African region.

The International Workshop took place in Morocco, a country that has developed some leading initiatives in this field. The participants had therefore the opportunity to visit the Tangier Med Special Agency as well as a factory at the Tangier Free Zone. The day was complemented with a panel discussion in Tangier that shared important perspectives on the establishment of SEZs in North Africa.

The two-day Workshop was organized in collaboration by the Regional Program South Mediterranean of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, the Policy Center for the New South and the EastWest Institute. A Policy Brief will follow and sum up the main lessons learned from the International Workshop and will sketch a roadmap on the successful establishment of SEZs in North Africa.


Malte Gasseling