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Steady growth and development in Morocco

5th April 2007 Print
Steady growth and the development of more major resorts looks set to be the trend for the Morocco property market in 2007 according to Paul Staines, managing director of Newbury-based Saffron Villas Ltd.

Construction work starts this year on new resort developments in Atlantic coast locations including Mogador-Essaouira, Larache and Agadir. They form part of the Plan d’Azur backed by King Mohammed VI and the Moroccan Government in a bid to boost tourism.

First announced in 2001, the plan aims to increase the number of visitors to Morocco to 10 million by 2010. The plan is expected to create 600,000 new jobs.

Saffron Villas is the UK’s leading Moroccan property specialist. Having secured exclusive agency rights for a number of developments, it is projecting sales valued at £70 million in 2007.

Last year the firm handled the sale of more than 500 villas, apartments and townhouses in Morocco.

Saffron Villas has grown consistently since its conception in 2001. Recently it appointed three new employees to meet increasing demand, taking its staff total to 13.

The firm, which has offices in Berkshire, Saidia and Tangier, last year was the recipient of two prestigious industry awards.

In 2006 the British tourist market in Morocco rose by 40 per cent - more than double that of any other market - with Marrakech reporting a 68 per cent occupancy rate.

“This is excellent news for property investors,” says Paul who reveals that buyers with budgets ranging from £100,000 to £150,000 are leading the market.

“Many are in the 20 to 50 age bracket, with around 80 per cent of them seeking a holiday home in the sun within easy reach of the UK,” he said.

“Older purchasers, recognising that their pensions will provide less than they expected in old age, are buying investment properties with annual rental projections of between 10 and 12 per cent and a capital growth prediction in excess of 20 per cent per annum. We have even known properties to go up by 35 per cent in a six month period on the Mediterranean coast.

“Coastal locations such as Mediterrania-Saidia are the most popular, but we anticipate increasing popularity of Atlantic locations which can offer buyers a different option.”

The Moroccan property market will be further boosted by the introduction of the open skies agreement, which allows low cost airlines to fly into Morocco from Europe.

More information on the latest property developments underway in Morocco can be found at