United Nations Industrial Development Organisation
Amman, 28-30 April 2008
Ali BERRADA, expert ONUDI
General background information on the leather industry
in Morocco and Fez;
The leather cluster in Fez;
The UNIDO leather cluster project : some achievements;
I – General background information
The leather sector experienced over the last years some
structural changes at the international level. These
changes have been caused by :
Markets and Exchange liberalization
China’s entry into WTO
Fast-growing competition from Asian countries (China,
India and Vietnam)
Important depreciation of the dollar compared to the
Decision makers moving towards co-contracting and
Nevertheless, the Moroccan leather sector kept the path
with an average increase in exports of 7%.
II – The leather industry in Morocco
Important component of the national processing industries.
Sector spread throughout several regions: Casablanca, Fès –
Meknes, Tanger and Marrakech.
Leather sector in numbers (2006)
Scale National Leather sector Share in the
Number of 7751 358 4,4%
Employments 457.000 18.230 4%
Investments 15,6 99,6 millions dhs 0,5%
Production 233 2,3 1%
(Billions of DH)
Added Value 68,6 854,3 1,3%
billions dhs millions dhs
III – The leather industry in Fez
SMEs overtaken by a large number of craft unit
2 160 units and an average of 11 044 employees.
Formal sector: 133 enterprises (mostly working for the
Overall the sector accounts for more than 3 000 units
and 25 000 employees (formal, informal and craft
companies / workshops).
Sector Number of Average number Total
Formal 133 40 5140
Informal (Industrial) 855 10 8550
Craft 2160 5 11.044
Total 3148 24.734
•Entreprises = small entities, poorly equipped with traditional
• Important need to :
o Modernise the sector in order to make it competitive
o Strengthen the training of the operators and technicians.
In this framework, in 2001 UNIDO, in collaboration
with the Ministry of Industry, launched a project to
strengthen the leather industry in Fez and enhance the
The project « Support to leather cluster in Fez » aims at
promoting the local industrial development through a
3 main objectives for the project:
To improve the technology and overcome the inherent difficulties
particularly in infrastructures ;
To strengthen the associative structure of the sector;
To stimulate products marketing and promotion.
1. Feasibility study of an industrial park dedicated to the
leather industry, (committing to the environmental norms
and sector’s restructuring) ;
2. Launch of the set up and layout of the Industrial Park ;
3. Establishment of a local Association bringing together the
different sub-sectors (shoes, leather goods and
4. Set up of a workshop for training in model-making and
5. Development of a project for the establishment of a
professional training center for all the sectors ;
6. Stylistic assistance for 6 enterprises (Shoes and
leather goods) and implementation of two joint
7. Assistance in the promotion of the products at the
8. Training course of a leading group of enterprises in
the field of management ;
9. Increasing the awareness of the enterprises at
developping and modernizing competitiveness (ex.
Implementation of a pilot action to audit 5 tanneries) ;
10. Development of a pilot export consortium.
1 – Feasibility study of an industrial park dedicated to the
Analysis of technical and financial aspects for the
implementation of the zone (based on the Italian experience
in industrial districts).
2 – Launch of the layout operation for the Industrial Park
Acquisition of a 50 ht land by the Ministry of Industry;
Appointment of the contracting authority
Financial contribution of the Hassan II fund in favor of the
industrial Park ( lowering the price of the land);
Association of the leather industries in Fez = Main
counterpart in the implementation of the Park , member of
the follow-up committee .
3 - Development of a sectoral association at the local
Important initiative :
Promotes the success of the other project’s
Enables the interaction between an interlocutor
representing all the players and institutional partners
at the national and local level.
The Association of Leather Industries in Fez (AICF) was
established officially in Mars 2007.
It consists of 3 operation areas (Tannery, Shoes, Craft &
Clothing), and 3 centers:
Training & Technical Assistance,
Promotion & Communication
Organisational structure of the AICF
Tannery Shoes Craft/Clothing
Communication Training and Technical Competitive
Internal Market Assistance Modernisation
Recruitment of 2 trainers and workshop equipment;
Elaboration of training modules in collaboration with the
Launch of training courses (32 students in 2007);
Introducing the students to the most structured leather
Forecast on fashion trends.
5 – Launch of the project ‘establishment of a
professional training center’ (OFPPT)
Involvement of the Association in all the project’s phases :
identification of training requirements, recruitment of
trainers, development of programs, communication
targeting high- school students, admission of candidates...
The Center should be operational in September 2008
Stylistic assistance for the implementation of two joint
Development of the brand
Official presentation of the collection at the national
level (04th February 2008)
7 – Assistance in products promotion at the
international level (2007)
Implementation of a prospecting mission in Italy (Dec.
Connecting the enterprises with the national institutions
in charge of the export promotion.
Objectives of the training :
To enable managers and middle managers to strengthen
the enterprises through an operational restructuring and
by promoting competitive improvements;
To serve as an example for other managers willing to
take the same training.
9 – Competitive modernization
Modernization program is being developed (ANPME)
Diagnostic of 5 tanneries to improve their organization,
productivity and product’s quality.
Target group : companies that have participated in the
stylistic assistance project;
Main objectives :
Improvement of the companies competitiveness in terms
of industrial organization and mutual purchases;
Moving from subcontracting to co-contracting and, on the
long term, to the finished products. (joint collection
capitalizing on the « Made in Fez »);
Exports development and market diversification.
Traditional sector = lack of entrepreneurial skills;
Lack of linkages among the different sub sectors
(tanneries, leather goods producers and shoes
Lack of training centres;
Handicraft ↔ Industry
Pioneer initiative in Morocco and especially in Fez;
Increasing participation of the industrial players (AICF): follow
up of the activities, active involvement, etc. (sustainability);
Increasing involvement of public institutions providing
assistance to the development of the leather industry in Fez;
Implementation of an Industrial Development Program at the
Regional level (PDRI) which is part of the «Plan Emergence»,
having clear goals in terms of employment, GDP and
Establishment of a Vocational Training
leather industrial zone OFPPT
•MCINT , Wilaya Délégation provinciale OFPPT
•Délégation régionale du ONUDI
Délégation régionale du