The number represents an increase of 3.9%
Rabat – Morocco’s Foreign Exchange Office has announced that remittances from the Moroccan diaspora continue despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
Total remittances reached MAD 61.91 billion ($7.05 billion) at the end of November 2020, an increase compared to MAD 59.57 billion ($6.82 billion) at the end of November 2019.
The Foreign Exchange Office offered a comprehensive overview regarding Morocco’s economy today. The exchange office’s data shows notable resilience in the transfers made by Moroccans living abroad (MREs), despite the COVID-19 crisis.
Morocco estimates that the Moroccan diaspora currently stands at over five million Moroccans living abroad. COVID-19 prevented most diaspora members from traveling to Morocco for holidays, yet it did not affect their contribution to Morocco’s economy.
While diaspora remittances appeared not to be affected by the pandemic crisis, the economic challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic impacted other key sectors significantly.
At the end of November 2020, the net flow of Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) was down by 20%. FDI flows reached MAD 13.83 million ($1.57 million) against MAD 17.29 million ($1.97 million) a year earlier.
Furthermore, the exchange office discussed imports and exports, which both experienced decreases in the first eleven months of 2020 as COVID-19 impacted global travel, trade and manufacturing.
Trade deficit improves
Exports recorded a 8.4% decrease, while imports noted a drop of 15.9% compared to the first 11 months in 2019.
However, Morocco’s trade deficit decreased significantly in 2020. Morocco exported 29.3% more than the country imported (6.7%) on a quarterly basis, which is a positive sign for local businesses and exporters. The outcomes resulted in a drop of trade deficit by 26.2% or MAD 49.16 million ($5.59 million,) taking into account the last three months and the three months before.
The exchange office said that the drop in imported goods is due to the decrease in imports of almost all products, including energy, finished consumer products, goods equipment, semi-products, and raw products.
The office said that the performance of the automotive sector for the first 11 months in 2020 is explained by a decline in sales of wiring, construction, and lower levels of production of vehicle interiors and seats.
“The share of this sector in total exports stands at 27.7% against 285% a year earlier.”
The exchange office reported a decline in the exports of textile and leather sectors due to a significant date in sales of ready-made clothes. Other key sectors also experienced crises, including the aeronautics sector. The sector showed a decrease of MAD 4.75 million ($540,520).
Amid the crisis, other sectors showed resilience, confirmed by a good performance in the exports of agriculture and the agri-food sector.
The exports of agriculture and agrifood sector recorded an increase of 1% by the end of November 2020. The offsectors recorded an increase of 1% by the end of November 2020.
While Morocco, like the rest of the world, continues to be impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, the reduction of the country’s trade deficit and the continued flow of remittances is a positive sign in difficult times.