Rabat – The dismissal of Benkirane will not affect Morocco’s economic positive growth, but will make a dent in the country’s political liberalization prospects, says a new report published by the BMI Research Group, a subsidiary of the Fitch Group Company.
The research studying the economic and political scene in Morocco views the ousting of former Head of Government Abdelilah Benkirane following his failure to form a new government as having a “limited [impact] on the country’s positive economic trajectory.”
While the infamous five-month-long governmental deadlock during Benkirane’s tenure did indeed delay the adoption of a budget, which will result in a “modest uptick in uncertainty over fiscal policy,” BMI Research believes that policy continuity has traditionally been strong in Morocco, with political actors “committed to turn the country into a manufacturing and exporting hub between Europe and Africa.”
However, Benkirane’s failure to form a coalition, and the ongoing political deadlock shows “weak prospects for political liberalization over the coming decade,” states the report’s authors, before adding, “Mohammed VI’s recent moves to reaffirm his grasp over the country’s political life signal that any rapid liberalization of the political system is off the cards.”
BMI Research believes that King Mohammed VI’s decision to replace Benkirane “signals His willingness to unlock the ongoing political deadlock, and illustrates his control over the country’s political agenda.”
The research firm sees the King’s intervention and dismissal of Benkirane as an act of dominance of the political scene: “The king holds the executive power, and can dissolve parliament.”
In fact, this said dominance is how the report explains the stability of the economic position of the country. “He (the King) also formulates the country’s economic and political trajectory, underpinning our view that the delayed government formation will not affect Morocco’s economic outperformance over the coming years,” states BMI.
The last five months following the October 2016 legislative elections, which resulted in the re-election of the Islamist Justice and Development Party (PJD) for the second year in a row, were marked with unfruitful negotiations between the PJD and former coalition partners National Rally of Independents (RNI) and Popular Movement (MP).
As the country followed the relentless deliberations between Benkirane and Akhenouch, the prospect forming a ruling coalition appeared increasingly unlikely, if not impossible, until the King decided on Thursday to dismiss Benkirane from his duties and appoint Saadeddine Othmani as the new coalition leader.