The Moroccan government made a similar decision in March, with every member donating one month’s salary to the national COVID-19 response fund.
Rabat – Morocco’s government council announced on July 23 that all government personnel will donate one-fifth of their salaries to the national COVID-19 response fund from August through December.
King Mohammed VI ordered the creation of Morocco’s Special Fund for the Management and Response to COVID-19 on March 15. With an initial sum of $1 billion, the monarch aimed to use the fund to mitigate the social and economic impacts of the pandemic on Morocco.
Contributions from Moroccan government institutions and officials, sports teams, public and private enterprises, foreign governments and banks, and individual donors have more than tripled the fund’s initial value.
The government council’s decision aims “to consolidate the spirit of solidarity that was displayed by all the components of the Moroccan society under the wise leadership of His Majesty King Mohammed VI,” explained the Minister Delegate for Higher Education and Scientific Research, Driss Ouaouicha, during a press briefing.
The donations also mark the government’s contribution to the national efforts to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, he added.
The Moroccan government made a similar move on March 17, with every member donating one month’s salary to the fund two days after its creation. The same day, Morocco’s Parliamentarians donated their one-month allocations to the COVID-19 fund.
Other notable contributions in the first wave of donations include those of OCP Group ($310 million), the National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency ($113.9 million), and Afriquia Gas ($103.5 million).
In late May, the European Union transferred a grant of €157 million into Morocco’s COVID-19 fund. The donation came in response to the “incessant efforts led by the Moroccan state since the first days of the pandemic notably through the National Solidarity Fund COVID-19.”
In line with its intended purpose of supporting the Moroccan people and economy during the pandemic, the special fund finances monthly government stipends to Morocco’s informal workers.
Informal workers have suffered immense financial losses due to the suspension of regular economic activities. Despite easing lockdown measures and allowing people to return to work, Morocco decided to extend the aid program to cover the month of June in addition to March, April, and May. The Economic Watch Committee, charged with managing Morocco’s COVID-19 fund, is considering extending the initiative to July.