A recent report from Morocco’s High Commission for Planning revealed that two-thirds of Moroccan migrants are men, two-thirds are married, and 27% are young.
Rabat – Morocco’s High Commission for Planning (HCP) carried out a national survey on international documented migration between 2018-2019. The operation aims to provide representative, retrospective, and comparative data on the characteristics and behavior of Moroccan migrants, return migrants, and non-migrants.
The second phase of the survey is scheduled to be carried out in the first quarter of 2020 and concerns forced and irregular migration.
The first phase of the survey targeted a sample of 15,076 Moroccan households, divided into 8,144 households of current migrants, 4,072 households of return migrants, and 2,860 households of non-migrants.
HCP carried out the data collection between August 2018 and January 2019.
Young, male, and married
The institution defines a current migrant as any Moroccan national, aged 15 or older, who was a member of a surveyed household and who currently resides abroad. The survey covered a representative sample of 11,780 current migrants.
The current migrants are predominantly young, male, and married. More than two-thirds, 68.3%, are men. The percentage of women reaches its highest level among migrants aged 30-39, with 34.4% of them being women, and its lowest among those aged 60 and over, with only 2.9%.
Around a quarter of the migrants, 27%, are young, aged between 15 and 29. Women are relatively more numerous than men in this age group, with 32.8% and 24.4% respectively.
About a third of migrants, 32.5%, are aged between 30 and 39, with almost equal shares between men and women. Finally, the share of migrants aged 60 and over is 3.9%.
The average age of the first emigration for this sample is 25.3 years, the same for both men and women.
Around 72.7% of the migrants were single when they first emigrated. However, at the time of the survey, the proportions were almost reversed, with only 33.6% migrants still single and 62.4% married.
The average age for first marriage for the migrants is 27.3 years, 28.8 years for men and 24.3 years for women.
Education and professional activity
Concerning the migrants’ level of education, about a third of the migrants, 33.6%, have reached higher education. Around 24.5% have completed it and 9.1% did not complete it. The percentage of migrants with a high school level education is 17.4%, and those with a middle school and primary education level are 16.3% and 16.9% respectively. Finally, around 10.2% of the migrants left Morocco with no formal education at all.
Two-thirds of the migrants, about 64%, are in professional employment in their host country. The share of employed men (76%) is almost twice that of women (38.2%). The percentage varies widely by age. It goes from 37.9% among young migrants aged between 15 and 29 to 79.6% among 40-49-year-olds. A significant share of migrants aged 60 and over also remain in employment (44.2%).
In terms of the professional status, around 82.2% of the migrants in professional employment are employees, 69.4% with a contract and 12.8% without one. The share of self-employed migrants is 10.4% and that of the employers is 3.3%.
Destinations and civil status
About a quarter of the migrants have dual nationality. While 71.9% of the migrants have only a Moroccan nationality, the rest acquired a second nationality. Women received second citizenship more than men, with percentages of 33.3% and 24.6% respectively.
More than half the migrants, 53.7%, emigrated to look for a job and improve their living conditions. Education is the second reason why Moroccans migrate with 24.8%. Finally, family reunion or marriage are the reason in 20.9% of the cases.
Europe is the most dominating emigration destination for Moroccans, with a share of 86.4%. France comes first in the countries’ list with 31.1%, followed by Spain (23.4%), and Italy (18.7%). North America attracts 7.4% of the migrants, with 3.8% emigrating to Canada, and 3.6% emigrating to the United States. Arab countries also attract 4.2% of the migrants.
Money transfers and investments
More than 40% of migrants transfer money to their households in Morocco. Around 49.4% of men and 26.7% of women send money back to Morocco. The proportion increases with age, ranging between 18.2% for the 15-29 age group to 63.2% for those aged 60 and over.
The beneficiaries of the transfers are primarily the parents (69.9%), with mothers (38.1%) receiving money more than fathers (31.8%), followed by spouses (17.5%).
Only 3.9% of migrants declared carrying out investment projects in Morocco. The main investment sectors are real estate (40.7%), agriculture (19%), and construction (16.6%). Trade, restaurants, and cafes are also projects that migrants invest in.
The main factors that stop the majority of migrants from investing in Morocco are the lack or insufficiency of capital (38.9%), complicated administrative procedures (14%), and weak financial support or lack of fiscal incentives (8.6%). Corruption and favoritism are also mentioned in the report.