Miriem Bensalah-Chaqroun was the first woman to assume the position of CGEM President, between 2012 and 2018.
Rabat – Moroccan businesswoman Miriem Bensalah-Chaqroun has received the Knight of the Legion of Honor decoration from France.
Bensalah-Chaqroun is currently a director at Holmarcom group, a family holding business, as well as the CEO of Oulmes, a mineral water company.
Moroccan and French public figures from the fields of diplomacy, politics, and business attended the decoration ceremony on Tuesday, March 10, at the French Embassy in Rabat.
The French Ambassador to Morocco, Helene Le Gal, presented the decoration to Bensalah-Chaqroun.
The ambassador said she was delighted to award the Legion of Honor to “a great Moroccan lady and businesswoman.”
In October 2019, the UN selected Bensalah-Chaqroun to join the Global Investors for Sustainable Development (GISD) alliance, among 29 other CEOs, recalled the ambassador.
Le Gal emphasized the commitment of Bensalah-Chaqroun that left “an indelible mark” on Morocco’s private sector, recalling the Moroccan businesswoman’s position as Head of the Moroccan General Confederation of Enterprises (CGEM) between 2012 and 2018.
Bensalah-Chaqroun is the first and only woman so far to assume such position, commended the diplomat.
“Recognized as a hard worker, Ms. Bensalah-Chaqroun has helped to increase the influence of the CGEM, particularly in terms of economic diplomacy,” said the French ambassador.
During her two mandates as head of CGEM, Bensalah-Chaqroun visited 44 African countries and established close relations with African business organizations, allowing Morocco to develop strategic partnerships throughout the continent.
The Moroccan businesswoman also worked to significantly improve the business climate in Morocco, one of the key aspects of Morocco’s attractiveness, Le Gal added.
Meanwhile, Bensalah-Chaqroun said she was honored to receive the decoration two days after International Women’s Day.
“I appreciate the highly symbolic significance of this distinction,” she said, expressing optimism about the status of relations between Morocco and France.
The Legion of Honor is not the first recognition that the Moroccan businesswoman received.
On July 30, 2013, at the Throne Day reception, King Mohammed VI awarded Bensalah-Chaqroun with the Order of National Merit decoration.
In January 2017, Spanish Ambassador to Morocco Ricardo Diez-Hochleitner decorated the Moroccan lady with the Spanish Order of Civil Merit for her contributions to economic relations between Morocco and Spain.
Forbes Middle-East magazine has also mentioned Bensalah-Chaqroun on several occasions.
In 2014, the businesswoman was ranked the 15th most powerful Arab woman under the category of family businesses, and in 2017, she appeared on the magazine as the 30th most powerful Arab businesswoman.
Finally, in 2018, Forbes named her the 26th most influential Arab woman.
Earlier this month, two other Moroccans received the French Legion of Honor.
Leila Benjellou, president of the BMCE Bank Foundation, received the decoration for her local and international initiatives in the fields of education, environment, and culture.
Meanwhile, Noureddine Bensouda, the General Treasurer of Morocco, received the medal for his major reforms in the treasury, notably the implementation of the “modern structures necessary for anchoring the performance-budget approach.”