Other than remittances, the majority of data and statistics show that COVID-19 crisis continues to have a significant impact on Morocco's economy.
Rabat – Morocco’s Foreign Exchange Office has announced that Moroccan diaspora remittances reached MAD 67.99 billion ($7.54 billion) in 2020.
The number shows a high degree of stability in terms of the money transfers by Moroccans living abroad (MREs) despite the COVID-19 crisis.
Due to the closure of borders, the pandemic prevented millions of Moroccans from returning home for summer holidays.
Every year, over two million diaspora members come to Morocco in different seasons.
Morocco’s government estimates the number of Moroccans living abroad at over five million.
Data from the World Bank’s 2019 Migration and Remittances report indicate that remittances from Moroccans living abroad contributed to Morocco’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 6.2% in 2018.
Meanwhile, travel receipts reached MAD 36.36 billion ($4 billion) for 2020, while travel expenditure fell by 49.6% to MAD 10.54 billion ($1. 17 billion), according to Morocco’s Foreign Exchange Office.
The travel surplus dropped by 55.3%, said the office’s statement.
In terms of Moroccan direct investments abroad (IDME), the office said their net flow decreased by more than MAD 5.27 billion ($585 million) this year, while the net flow of Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) recorded a slight increase of 1% at the end of December 200.
The FDI reached MAD 15.54 billion ($1.72 billion) against MAD 15.37 billion ($ 1.70 billion) in 2019.
The exchange office’s note also unveiled that Morocco’s trade deficit stood at over MAD 158.68 billion ($17.61 billion) this year.
The number represents a decrease of 23.1% year-on-year.
The office also recorded a surplus increase of 31.1% to MAD 60.74 billion ($6.74 billion) in the balance of trade.
Morocco’s exports declined by 30.1% to MAD 130.24 billion ($14.45 billion), while imports decreased by 29.1% to MAD 69.49 billion ($7.71 billion).
In terms of energy, the exchange office reported that Morocco’s bill stood at MAD 49.83 billion at the end of December 2020, representing a decline of 34.7% compared to the end of December 2019.