Welcome to the second guest blog whilst Shani's on holiday.
It's been quite a positive week. The AP6 management meeting went well, the golf course and Barcelo hotel have reopened, the sun has returned to Saidia and the site is having a make over in preparation for the King's visit. An army of road sweepers and painters. The business to be in this week is selling red paint and new plants.
As many of you will know I have lived in Morocco for over 5 years and have been coming to this region of Morocco for about 16 years. In my opinion Morocco is a country full of potential, with a beautiful unspoilt coastline and the most warm and friendly people. However, it's not the UK and things will always take a little longer than you plan for. My advice, when setting up your apartment, come for longer and have time to enjoy your investment.
A lot has been said about the quality of finish and the time it's all taking. The instant reaction is to blame the inexperienced Moroccan labour force or the beauocracy that surrounds day to day life in Saidia. Whilst this may be part of the problem we should dig a little deeper into the events of the last five years. We have had Fadesa, Martinsa Fadesa and now the joint venture between Martinsa fadesa and Addoha called Groupe fadesa Maroc. Three overall managing companies for saidia in five years. Alongside these companies the Government of Morocco has worked on infrastructure, roads and airports. The result has been a muddled mix of personnel with no clear or strong leader, no focus on priorities and most importantly has led to work being undertaken unsupervised by the inexperienced. It is unfortunate that they did not listen when being told that doing the job right first time, even though the initial costs are higher will always be cheaper than doing the job twice or in some cases five times over. It should be said that the Government of Morocco has done it's bit and has delivered the new roads and the new airport in Oujda is almost complete. Their mistake was to leave the site in the hands of GFM when there obviously was no progress taking place.
Exaggerating and misleading articles by some of the agents who sold property in saidia has also not helped. Timescales were made up. The implication that most of the site was almost complete can be seen in many of their brochures. The computer generated images are still used although there are actual apartments to photograph. Not surprisingly you don't hear much from them now. You certainly don't hear their original boasts that they will help you all the way through the buying and setting up process. Where are they now? I suppose the natural evolution is from estate agent to politician. Be careful who you vote for.
I'm sure that you'll all be glad to know that Shani will be back soon and you won't have to read any more blogs from the two grumpy old men. It was fun whilst it lasted but now it's back over to Shani.