The report is the first of its kind and will assess Morocco’s response to the social, economic, and health aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Rabat – Oxford Business Group (OBG) and the Moroccan Agency for Investment and Export Development (AMDIE) are set to produce the first report examining Morocco’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact of the crisis on the North African country.
After both parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), preparations are underway to develop the official assessment titled “Covid-19 Response Report,” said a press release from the OBG.
The report is set to present Morocco’s pandemic strategy in a synthetic format, highlighting essential data and including infographics relating to the country’s socio-economic landscape.
The report will provide an overview of the macroeconomic and political situation before the COVID-19 crisis and examine the spread of the virus in Morocco compared to other countries.
OBG and AMDIE will detail Morocco’s proactive response strategy to the health and economic crises. The country closed all land, air, and maritime borders by March 15, despite having only 28 confirmed cases of COVID-19 at the time. The Moroccan Ministry of the Interior declared a state of emergency on March 19 and the country entered lockdown the following day, counting 79 total cases and three deaths.
The report will highlight the key factors in the country’s anti-virus efforts, including the use and production of face masks. The wearing of face masks in public became mandatory on April 7. As of June 9, Moroccan companies have exported over 18.5 million protective face masks to 11 countries after production exceeded domestic demand.
The report will also include an economic assessment of the epidemic and estimate the medium-term impacts on key sectors such as tourism and industry for the second quarter of 2020. Tourism has been one of the hardest-hit sectors of the economy, and the Ministry of Tourism is coordinating with the Moroccan government to actualize a recovery strategy focusing on encouraging domestic tourism and preserving employment.
The report is set to analyze Morocco’s budget measures such as aid distribution and stimulus mechanisms. The government’s financial aid program for informal workers has benefitted 4.3 million households since April. As of June 2, more than 3.5 million families have received food aid.
The Special Fund for the Management and Response to COVID-19 will also be a subject of the report. King Mohammed VI called for the establishment of the fund on March 15 with an initial budget of $1 billion. The fund has since racked up an additional $3 billion in contributions from institutions and public and private actors.
The report will also examine Morocco’s suspension of payment of social charges and the establishment of a moratorium on the repayment of bank loans. It will assess the impact of these measures on households and businesses.
Finally, the report will dissect the measures Morocco took to facilitate the country’s short- and medium-term recovery and analyze the sectors that require the most attention going forward.
Morocco has enjoyed national and international recognition of its strict but effective efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19 in the country. On May 27, Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani said Morocco had managed to “avoid the worst” and would successfully overcome the next stage of the COVID-19 pandemic, “as it did in the previous one.”
By increasing COVID-19 testing capacity, authorizing mass screenings of employees before returning to work, and establishing hygiene protocols for businesses and workplaces, Morocco is on track to safely pursue its gradual deconfinement strategy.