The local/Jordanian Societe Immobiliere de Promotions & d’Activites Touristiques (SIPAT) has been awarded a contract to develop a marina resort in Agadir for MD 661 million ($60.2 million). The project is one of three at various stages of progress on the five-kilometre Agadir Bay, for which total investment is estimated at $350 million.

Land for the 110,000-square-metre development has been part-sold, part-leased to SIPAT, in line with rules governing ownership of coastal land. The company benefits from several land and tax incentives in the contract agreement. Four-fifths of the total land area purchased was sold at one-third of the market price. Duties will not be paid on equipment imported for the hotels and leisure facilities and value-added tax exemption has been granted for the entire investment.

In addition to a marina, the development, to be situated on the north of the five-kilometre Agadir Bay, will include a 250-room, fivestar hotel, an ‘apart-hotel’ with 160 rooms and 527 apartments, a leisure centre and a shopping mall and restaurant. Construction of the development must be completed within five years, after which point SIPAT is expected to form subsidiaries to manage the different components.

The Economy, Finance, Privatisation & Tourism Ministry awarded SIPAT the package without going through a bidding process.

‘There have been plans for a marina in Agadir for almost seven years now, ‘ says a ministry official. Offers submitted in an initial bidding round for the development some five years ago were rejected as unsuitable. The SIPAT founders are Aziz Akhannouch, head of the local Afriquia Group, and Jordanian entrepreneur Zaid Ali.

Solmelia of Spain has been awarded a $100 million project to build two hotels of 500 rooms each and a golf course. The 1.2 millionsquare-metre development is planned for the south side of Agadir Bay. Technical studies have been carried out and building is expected to begin in the next few months, as soon as the licence has been awarded.

The ministry says the final elements in the development will include construction of several new hotels in the centre area. Contracts to build and manage hotels have been awarded to France’s Accor, Germany’s Neckermann, UAE-based ABS Hotel Property, Saudiowned Palais des Roses Internationales and the local Tikida (MEED 13:6:97).

The marina award is the last in 12 tourism contracts to be signed over the last 18 months, at a total value of some MD 8,300 million ($756 million), the ministry says. About 14,000 new jobs have been directly created by the projects which have raised hotel capacity countrywide by some 19,000 beds.