“The visit is meant to discuss preparations for the World Bank and IMF annual meetings scheduled for October 2021 in Marrakesh.”
Rabat – IMF chief Kristalina Georgieva is set to embark on a 4-day trip to Morocco to discuss the country’s economic outlook as well as the organization of a joint IMF-World Bank event in Morocco in the coming months, according to an official statement.
Initially announced earlier this month as a one-day meeting as part of Georgieva’s Maghreb tour, the IMF chief’s Moroccan visit is now set to span over four days, exclusively focusing on the organization of the IMF-World Bank annual meetings in Marrakech next year. There will also be discussions about the North African country’s economic trajectories in the past months.
From February 17-20 next week, the IMF official will meet with high-ranking Moroccan officials, probably including Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani and Minister of Economy Mohamed Benchaaboun, to discuss Morocco’s recent economic, monetary reforms.
In April 2018, Morocco was designated to host the annual meetings of the IMF and the World Bank in October 2021.
Speaking at a press conference in Washington on Thursday this week, IMF’s chief communications officer Gerry Rice said that the joint event will be the central theme of Georgieva’s Moroccan visit.
“The visit is meant to discuss preparations for the World Bank and IMF annual meetings scheduled for October 2021 in Marrakesh,” he said.
He noted that the IMF chief will also take part in round table discussions on good governance, as well as the role of the youth and civil society organizations in Morocco.
The visit comes amid strong Morocco-IMF cooperation. Meanwhile, it is understood that Morocco wants to renew the Precautionary and Liquidity Line (PLL), an IMF instrument that provides financing to countries with sound economic policies. The PLL is intended to serve as insurance and to help resolve financial crises.
Since at least 2012, when it struck the PLL deal with the IMF, Morocco has been consistently singled out as a “good student,” with consecutive IMF reports repeatedly lauding the kingdom for its successes in macroeconomic resilience, economic growth, and social inclusion.
From the most recent IMF reports, however, the overriding idea has been that while Morocco’s latest reforms remain an overall success story, the country still faces a lot of challenges in terms of economic resilience and wealth-generating growth.
Morocco’s “economic growth, below 3 percent, is not robust enough and unemployment remains high, especially among the youth and women,” stressed a recent IMF report. “Morocco needs to step up reforms to further enhance its macroeconomic resilience, build buffers, and move towards more private sector-led, inclusive and job-rich growth.”