HomeEconomythe price difference between the farmer and the plate is unjustified

the price difference between the farmer and the plate is unjustified

The World Bank (WB) has lowered its economic growth forecast in 2023 for Morocco, but expects it to accelerate to 3.1% in 2023 (compared to 3.5% forecast in last January), thanks to the revival of the agricultural sector. The WB had forecast an acceleration in growth to 3% in 2023, with the assumption of a return to average cereal production.

These forecasts seen and revised remain, however, significantly higher than the estimated growth in 2022 (2.1%), which lends to a semblance of appeasement in view of the difficult context suffered. This is explained by a rebound in the primary sector, with an increase in agricultural GDP of 9%, after -15.1% in 2022. On the other hand, non-agricultural GDP is expected to slow from 3.2% in 2022 to 2 .5% this year.

According to the latest World Bank report (Responding to Supply Shocks), after a strong post-covid rebound last year, the Moroccan economy has come under increasing pressure from overlapping supply chain shocks, the drought wave and soaring commodity prices. commodities which fueled inflation hence these projections.

That said, the WB indicated that downside risks remain due to geopolitical tensions, including the war in Ukraine, the slowdown in Morocco’s main trading partners in the euro zone and potential new climatic shocks. The WB also welcomed the efforts of the Moroccan government which adopted a panoply of measures, which included providing a general subsidy for basic foodstuffs and not increasing the prices of regulated products, which led to a partial stability in the prices of goods and services, which represent 25% of average household expenditure.

The BM, in its document, did not omit to recall that last December, Bank Al Maghrib (BAM) had decided to raise the interest rate by 50 basis points to 2.5%, against 2% previously , in an attempt to curb the high inflation resulting from the repercussions of the war in Ukraine and the drought.

Jesko Henchel, World Bank Country Director for the Maghreb and Malta, said in a statement quoted by the report that “Recent measures to deal with supply shocks and preserve the purchasing power of Moroccan families have significantly mitigated this impact and prevented more people from falling into poverty.” Hentchel added that “the launch and generalization of the family subsidy system, which will be implemented in Morocco, will help to effectively target the most needy population groups in an equitable and cost-effective manner to cope with the sharp increase in prices of this magnitude”.

However, the Monetary Institution regrets that “despite these measures, the most needy families are the most affected by the rise in food and other prices due to inflation”. Morocco has suffered a lot from the drop in rainfall and especially from the rise in world prices of raw materials, which has prompted the government to intervene on several occasions to reduce them to mitigate the impact of food prices and the household energy. The latter, or at least the most modest and vulnerable, continue to suffer the most from the impact of rising food and other prices due to inflation (1/3 higher for the poorest 10% of the population).

The WB noted that there was a huge difference in the price of agricultural products between the farm and the plate and considered the fact unjustified. The Institution called on the Executive to implement structural policies to remedy this and restrict the bottlenecks in food markets. The publication of the report comes at a time when the prices of vegetables and fruits in Morocco have increased dramatically. This had given rise to lively controversy over the phenomenon of the multitude of intermediaries and speculators between the farmer and the final consumer. According to the High Commission for Planning, the inflation rate for the year 2022 was around 6.6%, the highest figure recorded in Morocco for three decades.



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