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Spanish Endesa abandons its ambitions in Morocco

The leader in the Iberian Peninsula is backtracking, while the Moroccan market seems to represent a natural expansion for him.

Spanish Endesa is it doing a trait on its ambitions to embark on renewable energy in Morocco? Everything seems to believe that yes, barely four years after having planted his banner through Endesa Generacion Morocco.

Indeed, the leading energy company in the Iberian Peninsula has just liquidated its Moroccan subsidiary created in April 2016 and which was supposed to develop power generation projects based on renewable energy. A recruitment campaign for several local experts in the green energy sector was even conducted in 2017 for this purpose! Why such a turnaround when the Moroccan market seems to be a natural expansion for the Endesa group?

It may be necessary to find a beginning of answer within the limits of the current regulatory framework which governs the private production of electricity based on renewable energy outside the projects granted by ONEE in Build Own and Transfer (BOT) mode.

Indeed, as we have indicated several times in these columns, the 13-09 law which, as early as 2011, marked the liberalization of the green electricity sector in Morocco and the one that completed it in 2016 (in Law 58-15) have so far failed because of the appallingly long delays in the permitting process (cycle from the first preliminary studies to the final concession and the building permit), but also the obvious inability of the government to release the necessary application texts without which the profitability of a large part of the renewable energy projects is only a wishful step.

The Iberian actor, controlled by the Italian group ENEL, would not be the first foreign actor to have thrown in the towel in Morocco after disappointed hopes, or to lose patience in the wake of a long bunkering. duration in the administrative meanders like the world leader EDF whose record in Morocco in terms of renewable energy is still virgin seven years after creating EDF Morocco.

It should be remembered that the company also has a foothold in Morocco in conventional power generation through its 32% stake in the Tahaddart thermal power station (near Asilah), which contributes 7% of the country’s electricity consumption. Electricity, which ONEE is expected to disengage in the near future by selling its 48% block as part of the privatizations announced by the 2019 Finance Act.

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