Despite the uncertainty surrounding many of its neighbors, Morocco is fast becoming one of the most lucrative investment markets in North Africa and the Middle East. Over the last 10 years, the country has experienced significant economic, political, and social reform. Its strategic geographic location and openness to international trade make it a viable investment opportunity.

This article covers critical aspects of the requirements for importing into the country.

Import process

The Importer of Record must sign the "commitment for Import, Import License Preliminary Import Declaration" (in French) for free imports. The document must be drawn up in 5 duplicates and should be accompanied by a Pro-Forma invoice in 5 copies that provides the following information.

  • The unit price presented in ex-works value, FOB (whether it’s the seller or buyer who takes responsibility for goods that are damaged or destroyed during the shipping process), and FAS ( whether the seller must organize for the purchased goods to be delivered to a specific vessel at a specified port). 

  • Quantity (given in exact units of a relevant measure)

  • Trade description of the merchandise.

The “import commitment” must be submitted to an accredited bank chosen by the importer for import authorization. After authorization, the bank will issue you a copy of the form along with two extra copies in a sealed envelope, to be submitted to the customs office. 

Once approved, the Commitment to Import form can be used for up to 6 months from the date of domiciliation, and it helps facilitate customs clearance and financial settlements for merchandise.

Importing duty-free goods 

You'll need to apply for an exemption from customs duties if you wish to import goods categorized as duty-free. Of course, this is under the terms set within the Tariff and commercial Agreements and Accords framework between Morocco, the European Community, and Morocco and the States of the European Free Trade Association.

Your request to have your merchandise exempted from customs duties must be submitted through a form known as the "Customs Exemption Applicion," along with 4 copies. You will also need to attach a pro forma invoice in three copies that specifies

  • The unit price of the Goods (expressed in FAS, FOB, and ex-works value).

  • Quantity expressed in units of relevant measures.

  • Trade description of the merchandise to be imported.

After you deliver your application, it will be vetted by the ministry of foreign trade. You will receive a response from the same department after its representatives consult with the relevant ministries.

Note: the final decision to grant or deny customs exemption comes from the Ministry of Foreign trade.

All customs duty exemptions are valid for up to 6 months from the data on the stamp issued by the foreign trade ministry.

Goods that require an import license

For merchandise that requires an import license, the importer of record must file a license application form with 6 copies along with a receipt to the Ministry of Industry, Investment, Trade, and Digital Economy (MIITDE). The license is delivered by the same ministry after consultations with all relevant stakeholders have concluded. The import license is valid for up to 6 months.

For some types of merchandise, the importer of record will have to make a preliminary import declaration. This approach is meant to limit the importation of goods likely to seriously diminish local production. This may include scenarios of massive imports, imports of goods subsidized in the exporting country, or products imported at dumped prices (a form of price discrimination in which a manufacturer lowers the price of a commodity entering a foreign market to the point that it is cheaper than locally produced items in the same category).

The importer of record must provide 6 copies of the preliminary import declaration to the MIITDE. This will be forwarded to the ministry of foreign trade, which will evaluate the application and respond within 10 days. The preliminary import declaration remains valid for 9 months and maybe renewed once.

Importing samples

Samples may be imported without customs duties. This kind of permit is limited to 6 months, and it may be for two years.

Additional considerations

Your merchandise will be subject to the invoice, import title, and any other documentation required depending on the products' nature.

The customs authorities will let you (the importer) make advance payments of up to 40%. However, this is only permitted for specific products whose value does not exceed DH 200,000.

The Moroccan customs authority has a dedicated page on import procedure if you’d like more detailed information

Importing Network equipment into morocco 

According to articles 15 and 16 of Law No. 24-96 on postal and telecommunications services, all radio installations and equipment connected to a public telecommunications network must pass a pre-type approval process. Moroccan customs authorities will only permit network equipment into the country if it conforms to pre-verified designs and bears an appropriate manufacturing label. This process is managed by the National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency of Morocco (ANRT)

Starting in 1999, the body made several amendments to incorporate new international standards and make it easier for importers to bring equipment into the country. On account of these changes, all companies that subscribe to Annex 2 are required to fulfill the following requirements before importing network equipment into morocco.

  • The application must be submitted electronically. Once this has been done, the applications' original documents will be filed within 31 days after the certificate of type approval or temporary type approval has been issued.

  • The importers must pay for the costs resulting from the request for new type approvals.

Though many consider Morocco too challenging to operate IOR services, Blackthorne has a strong presence in the country. Our agents have the skills and expertise to provide a seamless IOR experience. We’ll also help you obtain ANRT permits for nearly all IT products.

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