EIMA 2024, Innovative technologies for Morocco's agriculture

The press conference to present EIMA 2024 was held this afternoon in Meknés in the setting of the Siam Agricultural Exhibition. Morocco's increasingly competitive agriculture shows a growing need for innovative technologies to counter the effects of climate change. The Great Bologna Fair is one of the most eagerly awaited events by farmers and technologists in the North African country.

Decreasing water supply sources, soil impoverishment, loss of productivity and decline in agricultural income are the main challenges that Moroccan agriculture has faced positively in recent years, thanks to state support policies.

The Moroccan Vert Project (BMC) and the Generation Green project have indeed succeeded in increasing the competitiveness of a strategic sector for the Moroccan economy, which contributes 13% of the total GDP and employs 31% of the national workforce. Among the activities planned by the PMC, funds aimed at facilitating the purchase of irrigation systems (equal to half of the PMC's total budget) play an important role.

The expansion of the irrigated area, thanks to these investments, allowed further diversification of the country's agricultural production, especially in the category of high-value-added crops, especially in demand in foreign markets. Along with the increase in hectares planted with vegetables, fruits and olives – as explained by the producers' association FederUnacoma during the launch conference of EIMA International 2024 this afternoon – exports in the sector have also grown. Between 2008 and 2018, annual production of olives increased by an average of 7.4% per year, citrus fruits by 6.3%, and exports of fruits, vegetables and tomatoes increased by 13.5%, 8.5% and 5.6% per year. respectively.

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In addition to focusing on irrigation systems that are truly strategic for a country affected by the effects of climate change, state support programs also provide specific interventions for mechanization that have raised the market for tractors, operating machinery and equipment. However, after years of high activity, the two-year period of 2022-2023 marked a slowdown in sales, and a change in the VAT regime penalized purchases by importing companies. According to the forecasts of the Export Planning Institute, the fall in the agro-machinery sector, closed in 2023 with a turnover of 138 million euros (-17%), will be temporary: at the beginning of the current year, the market should be running again. (+6.4%), and then consolidate growth in subsequent years.

The expansion phase – said Girolamo Rossi, head of FederUnacoma's communication and business culture office at a press conference – will last until the end of 2027 and should register an average increase rate of 6%. The recovery will also have a positive impact on trade relations and technical cooperation with Italy, which last year established itself as Morocco's second largest supplier with market share despite a slowdown in exports over the two-year period 2022-2023. 12.4% (the value of our exports is 18 million euros).

The 46th edition of EIMA, the World Exhibition of Agricultural Mechanization organized by FederUnacoma in Bologna from November 6 to 10, is an important opportunity to strengthen cooperation between the two countries. With its five thematic halls (EIMA Green, EIMA Components, EIMA Energy, EIMA Idrotech, EIMA Digital) and more than 50 thousand models representing 14 product sectors – from irrigation systems to specialized tractors, agricultural equipment to green maintenance machines, to bio-energy – are on display. The Bologna event presents a wide range of technologies suitable to meet every need of agriculture in the North African country.

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The audience of exhibitors is very rich: to date, more than 1,500 companies, 500 of them from abroad, have already formalized their participation in the event, but the number will increase in the coming weeks, bringing the total number of exhibitors. Highest levels in exhibition history. Precisely for this reason, the EIMA International is one of the most eagerly awaited events by Moroccan technologists and farmers, with its number doubling from 194 in 2016 to 424 in 2022 in the last editions. So, along with Algeria, Morocco was the most represented African country at the Great Bologna Fair today.

According to the organizers' predictions, the increasing trend should be confirmed again this year: in addition to buyers from all over the country, a large delegation of highly qualified operators selected by the Italian Agency for Foreign Trade ICE is expected at the Bologna exhibition. Center. The ICE office in Casablanca can boast of a long-standing collaboration with FederUnacoma – it was said at the press conference – organizing the visit of representatives who engage in business-to-business meetings with Italian agricultural machinery manufacturers. Bologna.

The 46th edition of EIMA 2024 offers many innovations to Moroccan operators, starting with real space, dedicated to robots, drones and, in general, all highly automated technologies capable of increasing production yields and improving the sustainability of crops. Utilization of factors of production. These are truly pressing needs for North African state agriculture, which is particularly exposed to the effects of climate change.

The focus on innovation continues with a regular exhibition of the winning models of the „Technological Innovations 2024” competition and several in-depth technical meetings on issues most relevant to the world of primary sector and agricultural machinery.

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Technology will be the protagonist in the spaces outside the pavilions, in the outdoor areas where the Tractor of the Year finale will be staged, as well as demonstrations of vehicles for bioenergy supply chains, horticulture and green trials. Maintenance machines. The November meeting is still six months away, but already EIMA 2024 has the makings of a 'top' event.

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