Rabat - The launching of the Moroccan dirham liberalization process, originally scheduled for early July, has been postponed, government spokesman Mustapha El Khalfi said on Thursday in Rabat.
Rabat – The launching of the Moroccan dirham liberalization process, originally scheduled for early July, has been postponed, government spokesman Mustapha El Khalfi said on Thursday in Rabat.
The move to a flexible exchange rate system “remains valid”” said the minister, explaining that “the start of implementation of this reform will be announced in due course, given the nature of such decisions.”
At a press briefing at the end of the weekly meeting of the Council of the Government, El Khalfi stress the need for further studies before the launch of this operation.
El Khalfi recently indicated that the government has taken the necessary precautionary measures to ensure a gradual transition to a flexible exchange rate system, stating that a monitoring system has been set up.
Expected to be slow and gradual, the reform allowing the Moroccan dirham to switch from a fixed exchange rate to a flexible one was scheduled to be launched starting in the second half of 2017 on July 1.
However, by the end of June the Moroccan central bank and the Ministry of Economy postponed sine die a press conference scheduled for June 29 to officially present the contours of the new exchange regime, raising questions in the local press about its possible “abandonment.”
Trading rooms entered into a frenzy as commercial bank’s “speculations” against the dirham went wild. Worries about a devaluation prospect triggered a rush on currency, draining over MAD 44 billion from the central bank’s foreign reserves.
Bank Al Maghrib governor Abdellatif Jouahri assured on June 20 that “there will be no devaluation” after the start of the floating regime, which will replace the fixed exchange rate regime currently implemented in Morocco.
The dirham exchange rate is currently set by the Moroccan monetary authorities on the basis of a basket representing the euro and the dollar, at 60 percent and 40 percent respectively. The value of money will depend in the future regime on the confrontation between supply and demand.