Rabat – Morocco’s real GDP growth is expected to fall to 3.1 percent in 2018, after reaching 4.1 percent in 2017, a year when the agricultural season was “exceptionally good,” according to a report from the African Development Bank.
The bank’s outlook comes to echo that of the government’s forecasts, which expects a growth rate of 3.2 percent, while maintaining the dynamics of non-agricultural value added, which should reach 3.6 percent in 2018.
For the ADB, much of Morocco’s growth achieved in 2017 “was driven by the increase in the value added of agriculture, which grew by 16.1 percent in 2017.”
“In addition to favorable weather conditions, the excellent performance of the agricultural sector in 2017 is linked to a 52 percent increase in the use of certified seed, 1.66 million quintals compared to 1.09 million in 2016 and good performance of livestock, market gardening, fruit and fishing,” adds the ADB.
As for “the evolution of macroeconomic indicators,” the ADB said that in 2017, Morocco continued its policy of fiscal consolidation it launched in 2011, stressing that the budget deficit settled around 3.6 percent of GDP in 2017 against 4.1 percent in 2016, and is projected to reach three percent in 2018.
Foreign trade is also expected to improve compared to 2016, according to the bank. This improvement will be due to lower imports and higher production of wheat, in addition to the evolution of exports resulting from “new trades” in the automotive, aerospace, and electronics sectors, among others.
Regarding the current account deficit, it is estimated at four percent of GDP for 2017 against 4.4 percent in 2016. This improvement, explains the ADB, is due to a 32 percent increase of foreign direct investments and a two percent increase of the remittances of Moroccans living abroad compared to 2016.