Morocco is adding a new tariff on Turkish clothing, making it more expensive for Moroccan consumers.
Rabat – Companies importing clothing will have to pay a new Moroccan tariff of 27% on textiles from Turkey, despite the Morocco-Turkey free trade agreement (FTA), reports L’Economiste. The tariff, effective January 1, 2020, will continue to impact Morocco-Turkey trade until December 31, 2021.
Businesses that buy imported Turkish clothing and other textiles to sell in Morocco will now have to pay a tax of 27% before selling the clothing, making Turkish clothing more expensive for Moroccan consumers.
Morocco and Turkey signed an FTA in 2004 and implemented the agreement in 2006. In the 14 years since the FTA began, Moroccan-Turkish trade ballooned, and sales of Turkish textiles to Morocco reached $1 billion (MAD 9.6 billion) in the year 2018, according to the Office of Exchange.
Textiles are one of the main exports of Turkey to Morocco, accounting for nearly 50% of their $2.24 billion (MAD 21.5 billion) in total exports to Morocco in 2018.
The 27% tariff will dramatically increase the cost of Turkish clothing in Morocco from the rate of 0% a few months ago.
The Moroccan textile tariff for Turkey increased along with other products at the beginning of the year. The 2020 Finance Bill raised the tariff on products taxed at 25% to 30%. Because the rate on Turkish textiles was set to 90% of that tariff rate, it increased from 22.5% in late 2019 to 27%, beginning January 1.
In November, Morocco’s Minister of Trade Moulay Hafid Elalamy met Turkish Minister of Trade Ruhsar Pekcan in Istanbul to discuss the FTA.
Elalamy had threatened to take Morocco out of the FTA with Turkey earlier in the year, following reports that Turkey still imposes obstacles to Moroccan imports, in violation of the free trade agreement.