A look back at two years of Aziz Akhannouch’s government

A look back at two years of Aziz Akhannouch’s government

Two years since the National Rally of Independents (NRI) party swooped Morocco’s elections, the Kingdom has faced a succession of challenges and crises.

During this period, the Moroccan government, led by Aziz Akhannouch, has made ten commitments targeting various sectors.

Even though their election coincided with several global and local challenges, including years of drought in Morocco and the Russian-Ukrainian war, the Moroccan government has prioritized key sectors of development, such as job creation, economic growth, poverty reduction, women’s empowerment, and social sector reforms in healthcare and education.

The government has remained committed to implementing the objectives of the new development model and has undertaken various major projects.

Mohammed Chakir, a researcher in Political Science, told MoroccoLatestNews that he perceived the ruling party’s overall performance as a “crisis management government”, especially since their appointment came amid the repercussions of COVID-19 on the country’s economic and social situation.

It also coincided with the outbreak of the Russian-Ukrainian war, which has resulted in a notable increase in fuel prices in addition to the suspension of the Maghreb Pipeline.

The appointment of the NRI also coincided with the waves of drought and most recently the aftermath of the Al-Haouz earthquake that led to significant physical and material damage, affecting the residential and livelihood infrastructure of the region.

He also noted that the Moroccan government has been diligently focusing its efforts on reducing the repercussions of these aforementioned issues.

According to the researcher in Political Science, the government has taken several measures, including providing support for public transportation with the aim of maintaining affordable prices, increasing salaries for medical and nursing staff, and implementing the fundamental system’s reforms, which include incorporating contracted teachers into the system and raising salaries for higher education professors.

Chakir also noted the several measures implemented by the government to boost investments and address water scarcity challenges.

This includes the implementation of an investment charter and the approval of various investment projects.

It also completed the task of connecting the water supply between the Sebou region and the Moulay Abdullah Dam amid the challenges of drought and royal supervision. The aim was to ensure access to safe drinking water for both Rabat and Casablanca.

The government has also completed the commissioning of the Agadir desalination plant and begun planning for Africa’s largest seawater desalination plant.

As to the social investments, Chakir said that the government had accelerated the implementation of social protection measures, including the approval of necessary decrees and the establishment of the social register, as part of the Royal projects.

Chakir added that the Moroccan government has taken care of the repercussions of the devastating earthquake by providing financial compensation to the affected residents on an annual basis.

It also moved the earthquake-affected students to Marrakech to pursue their studies, while plans are underway for the reconstruction of damaged schools in the region.

Mohammed Jadri, an Economic Analyst, on the other hand, viewed the government’s overall performance as relatively satisfactory, as it outperformed in some sectors while falling short in others, during an interview with MoroccoLatestNews.

The government seeks to implement a new development model, led by the objective of doubling the gross domestic product by the year 2035.  This encompasses specific targets such as achieving a 4% growth rate, lifting one million households out of poverty, improving education, increasing women’s economic participation, reducing regional disparities, supporting the Amazigh language, and creating one million job opportunities.

Jadri emphasized that the government succeeded in implementing social protection measures in accordance with the Royal agenda. On a nationwide level, Morocco managed to implement mandatory health insurance for over 22 million Moroccans.

The expert in economy highlighted the government’s effort to expand family compensation benefits and enhance healthcare services through investment in human resources, along with significant investments in the education sector, according to MoroccoLatestNews.

Jadri also noted that the government was able to achieve economic recovery by concentrating on investments, bringing in significant financial resources of 245 billion dirhams in 2022 and 300 billion dirhams in 2023. It also provided assistance to businesses, established an investment charter, and reduced corporate taxes through tax reforms.

On the other hand, the expert criticized how the government dealt with the repercussions of inflation, as many individuals from the middle class and with limited income continue to face the consequences of rising prices. On its part, the government did not do enough to alleviate their struggle, according to Jadri.

He concluded his interview with MoroccoLatestNews by shedding light on the absence of a general wage, stagnant income tax reforms for two consecutive years, and a halt in social dialogue.

While the government has created temporary job opportunities for young people, there are limitations in terms of long-term skill development and access to the labor market, Jadri told MoroccoLatestNews.


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