The Minister of Tourism, Handicrafts and Social and Solidarity Economy, Fatim-Zahra Ammor, announced the development of a program based on partnerships with international tour operators and airlines.
In view of the reopening of the borders, a program based on partnerships with international tour operators has emerged as part of the “emergency plan for the support of tourism and the measures taken in the sectors of tourism, crafts, social and solidarity economy”.
“The ministry, through the Moroccan National Tourist Office (ONMT), has developed a program based on partnerships with international tour operators such as Global Caravan and FTI Touristik and airlines like Ryanair, EasyJet and Transavia, as well as on various means of marketing promotion, in particular digital platforms”, Ammor pointed out.
The same source specifies that 35 agreements have been concluded with 15 partners to ensure a strong recovery in tourism and an influx of foreign tourists after the opening of the borders.
She also announced the preparation of a communication campaign to promote the destination “Morocco” worldwide through advertising spots which will start as soon as foreign tourists return.
At the same time, Ammor presented the state of the tourism sector since the health crisis, which has been strongly affected, in particular by an unprecedented drop of 71% in tourist arrivals in 2021 compared to 2019, and losses, over two years, of 20 million travelers and 90 billion dirhams (MMDH) in foreign currency income.
After discussing the 2 billion dirhams emergency plan aimed at preserving jobs, enabling tourism businesses to cope with financial constraints and supporting them in the resumption of activity, the Minister reviewed the five effective measures included in this plan.
“To implement these measures as soon as possible, consultations have taken place with the other stakeholders for the preparation of a draft decree on lump sum compensation and 4 agreements relating to the deferral of contributions, a moratorium on the deadlines banks with State coverage of interim interest and business tax due by hoteliers, which will be subsidized to the tune of 1 billion dirhams”continues the minister.
Regarding the tourist offer, Ammor explained “that the ministry’s plan is based on the results of studies conducted by the ONMT to understand the requirements of foreign and Moroccan customers vis-à-vis the tourist product, recalling that these studies have made it possible to identify the behavior of tourists and their needs, in particular those related to cultural, ecological, rural, sports and seaside tourism, as well as congress and business tourism”.
Noting that efforts are continuing in favor of tourism enterprises through a special support program, mainly dedicated to small and medium-sized enterprises and business enterprises, the Minister underlined that a pilot operation has been launched in Marrakech and Agadir and should be generalized to the rest of the cities.
She also recalled the choice of Marrakech by the World Tourism Organization to set up its first African branch there, which will allow Morocco to shine on a global scale.
In terms of partnerships with other sectors and local authorities, Ammor reported that his department is working to improve the attractiveness of the tourist product and to adapt the offer to the new demands of travellers, noting that in Within the framework of cultural tourism, the contribution to the enhancement program continued with 8 “old medinas”, in addition to the programs to transform palaces into authentic hotels and to diversify the tourist offer of the city of Ouarzazate.
With regard to congress and business tourism, the Minister mentioned the project of the Marrakech Congress and Exhibition Center, which will place Morocco among the top 10 world destinations in this field.
She also discussed initiatives aimed at promoting domestic tourism, which accounts for around 30% of overnight stays in classified establishments, as well as the craft sector and the social and solidarity economy.