Morocco must capitalize on new technologies and working methods that have emerged as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the industry minister stressed.
Rabat – The digitalization of Morocco’s economy would create more jobs and promote investment, Minister of Industry Moulay Hafid Elalamy said Monday.
Morocco must take advantage of the opportunities that accompany digitalization, he stressed during the opening of the 10th “CyFy 2020” Virtual Conference on Technology, Society, and Security.
Indian think-tank Observer Research Foundation (ORF) organized the conference.
The COVID-19 pandemic pushed Morocco to make “substantial progress” in the digital sector and digital technologies, he continued.
The crisis changed consumption, production, and marketing habits in Morocco and across the globe and highlighted the importance of digital technologies.
Morocco should capitalize on new technologies and working methods that have emerged as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic to benefit a wide range of industries and trades, the minister said.
Although digitalization can have negative impacts on certain industries by reducing the need for manpower, it has human and ethical benefits worth considering, he added.
To illustrate his point, Elalamy described how Morocco hosted in 2019 the second “CyFy Africa” technology and innovation conference. He said the conference provided an opportunity to discuss issues related to data governance, “politics between the virtual and the real,” the fight against violent extremism, and the influence of technology and social networks.
Weighing the impact of digitalization on certain sectors and industries helps societies adopt the digital tools that have the greatest benefits. In Elalamny’s view, digitalization has untold advantages for Morocco.
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Morocco has accelerated the digitalization of several economic, social, and administrative services and received loans from international financial institutions to support digital development.
In June, the Digital Development Agency (ADD) finalized a partnership agreement with Morocco’s Numeric Cluster (MNC) to accelerate the country’s digital transition and promote digital services, largely by supporting innovative Moroccan projects.
The agreement includes the promotion of a platform for research and development and the digital industrialization of projects, training in the digital field, and artificial intelligence. The two institutions also agreed to cooperate in terms of the 4.0 industry, digital studies, organizing events, and financing innovative projects.
Morocco’s digitalization received a financial boost in June, as well. The World Bank approved a $500 million loan to Morocco to support the country’s digital inclusion reforms.
The loan is part of the Financial and Digital Inclusion Development Policy Financing Project (DPF) seeking to support mechanisms that promote Morocco’s digital transformation.
The goals of the program are to enhance financial inclusion and improve access to competitive digital infrastructure and services for businesses and individuals.
The World Bank said the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated the need for digitalization, and Morocco has risen to the occasion, undergoing a “rapid” digital transition during the pandemic.