Disrupted by the Covid, the Moroccan economy is gradually recovering

The Moroccan economy has shown, during the past year, exceptional vigor in a particular context linked to the health crisis, thanks in particular to the progress made in terms of vaccination and the very positive results of the agricultural campaign.

Morocco should indeed record economic growth of around 6.7% in 2021, one of the highest rates in the Middle East and North Africa region. After contracting 6.3% last year, the national economy is showing signs of gradual but significant recovery.

In agriculture, which is of undeniable importance for the country, the last agricultural season resulted in a very good harvest estimated at some 103.2 million quintals of cereals, an increase of 221% compared to the previous season and of 63% compared to the five-year average. The agricultural added value for the year 2021 should reach 130 billion dirhams, up 18%.

These performances ensured a regular supply of the markets but also gave a boost to the exports of the agricultural and agro-food sector which exceeded 56 billion dirhams at the end of the first ten months of 2021, that is to say an increase of 9.1%. An evolution that follows the consolidation of foreign sales of the food industry by 10.7% and agricultural, forestry and hunting products by 7%, according to recent data from the Department of Economic Studies and Forecasts (DEPF).

For its part, the coastal and artisanal fishing sector achieved an overall favorable development this year, with landings increasing in value by 29% at the end of October, thanks to the good performances recorded by almost all the segments.

The extractive sector has also contributed to the revival of the national economy. At the end of the first ten months of 2021, and under the effect of the appreciation of export prices, the value of foreign sales of phosphates and derivatives reached 61.16 billion dirhams, up by 47.2 %.

The flagship of the Moroccan economy, the industry has shown good momentum, despite the health crisis and the resulting restrictions, thanks to the stimulus measures undertaken at the highest level of the State but also to the determination of professionals who have shown not only innovation and creativity but also patriotism.

According to the High Commission for Planning (HCP), the production index of manufacturing industries excluding petroleum refining recorded an increase of 3.3% in the third quarter of the year compared to the same period last year. .

The HCP explains this development by the increase in the production indices of the majority of industries, in particular food, electrical equipment, metallurgy, wood, clothing and pharmaceuticals … with the exception of the automotive, chemical and industrial industries. manufacturers who have shown declines.

The automotive sector, the flagship sector of Moroccan industry, achieved sales abroad of 58.34 billion dirhams against 50.12 billion dirhams at the end of September 2020, an increase of 16.4%. An evolution that the Foreign Exchange Office explains by the increase in sales of the construction segment (+ 22.4%) and those of the cabling segment (+ 7.7%).

For their part, exports of textiles and leather advanced by 19.9%, mainly due to the increase in sales of ready-made clothing and those of hosiery.

Likewise, exports from other branches of the industrial sector maintained their notable strengthening at the end of September 2021, in particular the food industry (+ 12.8%), electronics and electricity (+ 33.3%) and aeronautics. (+ 10.4%).

In the third quarter of the year, exports from certain industrial sectors even outperformed the food industry (+ 34.2%), aeronautics (+ 46.9%) and electronics and electricity (+27, 4%) significantly exceeding their pre-crisis level.

Defying all forecasts, the fund transfers made by Moroccans living abroad were also of great support for the national economy, with some 79.65 billion dirhams at the end of October 2021 against 55.59 billion dirhams a year earlier, realizing a sharp increase of 43.3%. They should mark a rebound of 38.9% this year to reach a record amount of nearly 95 billion dirhams, according to forecasts by Bank Al Maghrib.

For its part, the banking sector performed well in 2021. “Moroccan banks have withstood the health crisis well, thanks to the speed and scale of the support provided to them by Bank Al-Maghrib”, said the Chief of Mission of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for Morocco, Roberto Cardarelli, at the end of the annual mission led by the IMF staff to assess the country’s economic policy and outlook.

For Cardarelli, “thanks to a particularly effective vaccination campaign and the rapid response from the authorities, the health crisis has been brought under control and the Moroccan economy is recovering”.

An economic recovery which should therefore continue in the coming years, despite the aftermath of the crisis, thanks in particular to the assets and competitive advantages of the Kingdom such as its geostrategic positioning and strong industrial ecosystems as well as the maintenance of stimulus measures.



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