At the end of July, HM King Mohammed VI reaffirmed the Kingdom’s ambitions in the Speech from the Throne , calling on the government for “rapid and qualitative implementation” of the ” Morocco Offer ” for green hydrogen . The Sovereign underlined the importance of “valorizing the assets available to Our country in this area and responding as best as possible to the projects carried out by global investors in this promising sector.”
Hydrogen is recovered through the electrolysis of water which separates this gas from oxygen.renewable energies: wind, solar or hydraulic . Bearing great hopes as part of global efforts to reduce carbon emissions , it is an energy vector that can be used to decarbonize the steel industry, cement manufacturing, fertilizers, chemistry, as well as the storage of clean energy.
Morocco is aiming for first place in the Maghreb , even if the sector is “embryo and major global projects will not see the light of day for three to five years”, Samir Rachidi , director of the Moroccan Iresen Research Institute, explains to AFP . In mid-August, the Ministry of the Economyannounced that it had reserved around 1.5 million hectares of public land to accommodate “eight green hydrogen and ammonia production sites”.
Moroccan media have reported projects from Australian, Indian, German, French and British investors. Morocco is jumping into the fray with the advantage of having already focused heavily over the last 15 years on clean energies which provide 38% of the electricity produced currently, and aims to reach 52% in 2030. Launch a sector of Green hydrogen, however, requires inexpensive electricity compared to rival countries like Mauritania or Egypt.
green hydrogen , explained Ahmed Reda Chami , president of the Economic, Social and Environmental Council (CESE) to the weekly “La Vie Eco”.
For Samir Rachidi , it is also necessary to establish “an industrial value chain which begins with seawater desalination plants (for electrolysis), electricity storage , up to the transport and marketing of hydrogen “.
Morocco has planned to add 7 desalination stations to its fleet of 12 plants, in order to simultaneously address water stresswhich threatens its agriculture, another key sector. For Rabat, green hydrogen is also crucial because this energy can be used for the production of ammonia , the basis of nitrogenous agricultural fertilizers , a sector in which the country is one of the world leaders thanks to its immense phosphate reserves .
Riding on strong global demand which has caused the price to soar to 1,000 euros per tonne since Covid-19 and the war in Ukraine, the OCP Group intends to produce one million tonnes of green ammonia in 2027 (from green hydrogen), and triple that in 2032.
The rest of the Maghreb is also positioning itself on green hydrogen. According to a report from Deloittepublished this summer, North Africa will be the first region in the world exporting green hydrogen in 2050, reshuffling the global energy cards.