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Maghreb – a high potential market

North Africa counts among the most important regions for the Militzer & Münch Group.

Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco – the Militzer & Münch Group is registering a marked increase in transports to the Maghreb region. In the past two years, the Militzer & Münch road transports from Germany to Morocco doubled, shipments to Tunisia even grew threefold. Customers also show increasing interest in transports from and to Algeria.

Association Agreements are in place between the European Union and Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria. Step by step, they are to be expanded and turned into Free Trade Agreements along the lines of a “Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area”. The relations between the EU and the Maghreb states Morocco and Tunisia are particularly close, although the two countries differ a lot in their economic setup:

  • Tunisia is highly industrialized and has good infrastructure. As per gross domestic product, industry is the second most important economic sector. According to the German-Tunisian Chamber of Industry and Commerce, the textile and garment industry is the strategically most important industry segment. 83.6 percent of the textiles produced in Tunisia are destined for export.
  • As a business location, Morocco boasts modern infrastructure and low production costs. Especially the automotive industry has grown over the past few years. The development of renewable energy sources is advancing steadily, too.
  • The economy in Algeria relies essentially on the production and export of oil and gas. At this time, the exports from the oil and gas sector account for about 98 percent of the country’s foreign exchange revenue. The government aims at creating more jobs outside this sector.

In 2016 Militzer & Münch opened a new customs terminal in Tanger, Morocco.

The French concept for success

Militzer & Münch started its activities in the Maghreb region already 35 years ago. “Especially the France-Maghreb trade lane is an important pillar of the Militzer & Münch Group”, says Dr. Lothar Thoma, CEO M&M Militzer & Münch International Holding AG. Marseille is the Militzer & Münch Tunisia hub – Bordeaux and Pusignan (Lyon) serve, among others, as trans-loading terminals for Morocco. A substantial share of the Militzer & Münch France transports is routed via the France-Maghreb trade lane. “What our French organization has already implemented successfully, we plan to transfer also to our units in Germany and Switzerland”, says Dr. Lothar Thoma. “With the business development team that was appointed for these two countries in September 2016, we expect good progress for both trade lanes.”  

In addition, Militzer & Münch sees high potential for traffics to Algeria. In August 2016, the Algerian government passed a new investment law which offers incentives to foreign investors. Especially customers who are active in plant engineering for the oil and gas industry, more frequently enquire about Militzer & Münch transports. At this time already, goods destined for Algeria are consolidated in Marseille, loaded into containers, and shipped to Algiers regularly. Other direct departures are offered to the Algerian ports of Oran, Bejaia and Skikda.

Eichenzell, the pivotal point

In Germany, the Maghreb transports are mainly handled via the branch office at Eichenzell. Under the direction of Uwe Bierfreund, Branch Manager at Militzer & Münch Stockstadt and Eichenzell, the Eichenzell team controls the operational processes as well as sales activities, and prepares offers. “Compared to the Far East, the proximity of the Maghreb region to Western Europe is a big advantage, especially for the textile and automotive industries", says Uwe Bierfreund. “We mostly opt for truck transports, but offer our customers air freight and ocean freight solutions as well.” For the most part, Militzer & Münch handles transports for the automotive, machine engineering, chemical and pharmaceutical industries. The cargo consists of medical equipment and electronics as well as upstream products for textiles, and finished textile products.

Groupage shipments and larger part loads are mostly transported door-to-door via road. For example, the Eichenzell team consolidates the goods for Morocco by Thursday evening. On Friday, the truck departs for the port of Algeciras. The transport reaches Tangier in the night from Saturday to Sunday. The Tunisia shipments process is similar. From Marseille or Genova to Tunis the goods are transported via ferry. There are additional departures for dangerous goods transports. 

“For Militzer & Münch, the Maghreb states are, and will remain, one of our core markets”, says Dr. Lothar Thoma. “With our experienced teams in the Maghreb, Turkey, France, Germany and Switzerland, we will continue to be optimally positioned, to offer individually tailored transport solutions for the different industries.”

Dr. Lothar Thoma
CEO M&M Militzer & Münch International Holding AG

Investing locally

“The goods that are consolidated at Eichenzell for the Maghreb do not come exclusively from Germany, but also from neighboring procurement countries such as Poland or Finland”, Uwe Bierfreund explains. The Militzer & Münch Group continually invested in company-owned infrastructure in the Maghreb over the past years in order to continue offering customers comprehensive services. Among others, Militzer & Münch built a customs terminal in Tangier, Morocco in 2016. With 10,000 square meters, the terminal offers additional warehousing capacity and enables fast customs clearance.

The solid infrastructure and in-depth know-how of the Militzer & Münch units in Tunisia and Morocco are important pillars of strength for the growing business in the Maghreb. “For Militzer & Münch, the Maghreb states are, and will remain, one of our core markets”, says Dr. Lothar Thoma. “With our experienced teams in the Maghreb, Turkey, France, Germany and Switzerland, we will continue to be optimally positioned, to offer individually tailored transport solutions for the different industries.” 

Green logistics in Morocco

In November 2016 – on the occasion of the UN Climate Change Conference in Marrakesh – Militzer & Münch Morocco was among the cosignatories of the first Moroccan charter for the advancement of ‘green’ logistics. By signing the charter, M&M Morocco voluntarily commits itself to environmental protection and sustainability. The charter was initiated by the state agency for the development of logistics (Agence Marocaine de Développement de la Logistique). 
For more information, go to: www.amdl.gov.ma/amdl/accueil/

Militzer & Münch – a strong presence in the Maghreb

In Morocco, Militzer & Münch operates four locations:

Tangiers / Casablanca / Sapino / Tanger Port

There are three Militzer & Münch locations in Tunisia:

Radès (Tunis) / Carthage Airport / Sousse