According to the Ministry of Economy and Finance, Morocco saw debt increases across government spending in 2018.
Rabat – The Ministry of Economy and Finance published new data on Morocco’s debt structure March 29 that displays debt increases in both public external debt and overall government debt.
External debt as a percentage of Morocco’s gross domestic product (GDP) declined, however.
Morocco’s public external debt stood at MAD 326.5 billion ($33.9 billion) in 2018, according to the documents, which the ministry updated on March 29. That makes up 29.2% of Morocco’s GDP, the same documents show—down from 31.3% in 2017.
The central government owes 45.4% of the public external debt.
Morocco’s total central government debt increased by 4.39% in 2018, now sitting at MAD 723 billion ($75.1 billion). The figure still represents a decrease in central government debt as a percentage of GDP: 64.6% in 2018 as compared to 65.1% in 2017.
Morocco’s national debt has grown consistently in recent years, despite calls from some government officials to implement policy to slow down debt accumulation. The World Bank signed an agreement with Morocco in 2018 to help reduce the kingdom’s overall public debt (82% of GDP) to 60% of GDP.
But Morocco has continued to borrow, most recently accepting a $400 million loan from the African Development Bank to support domestic industrialization projects.
Supporters of the loan say that despite the debt such loans rack up, their benefits for Morocco’s economy outweigh the risks.