Remittances from Moroccans residing abroad showed strong resilience in 2020 despite COVID-19 and its significant impact.
Rabat – Bank Al-Maghrib (BAM), Morocco’s central bank, is forecasting a more positive overview regarding the remittances from Moroccans residing abroad (MREs).
On Tuesday, the bank said that MREs remittances could reach MAD 71.9 billion this year ($7.99 billion) this year.
The bank stated that remittances from Moroccans residing abroad showed strong resilience in 2020 despite the COVID-19 crisis.
In numbers, the bank emphasized that remittances from MREs saw a 5% increase to MAD 68 billion ($7.55 billion) last year.
BAM is forecasting further increases from 2021to 2022; when the remittances from MREs are expected to reach MAD 73.4 billion ($8.15 billion) next year.
The bank also outlined import and export projections in its press release.
The statement projected an increase of imports at a “sustained” rate thanks to the expected increases in the energy bill and purchases of consumer goods.
The bank also cited recovery of exports due to the increase in production capacities, including in the automotive industry.
Regarding tourist receipts, the bank forecasts a “moderate growth, while remaining well below pre-crisis levels.”
The bank made the projections under the assumption of a gradual increase in arrivals of foreign tourists from the second half of this year.
COVID-19 crisis has been impacting the world’s economy, including in Morocco.
All sectors experienced repercussions, in particular, the tourism industry.
Morocco announced a state of emergency in March 2020 after the outbreak of the pandemic in the North African country. Morocco also closed borders, a measure that shut down the tourism sector.
The measures are part of Morocco’s proactive measures to limit the spread of COVID-19.
The pandemic cost Morocco’s tourism sector $4.77 billion, statistics from Morocco’s government said last month.
BAM forecasts moderate growth in the sector, standing at $38.1 billion ($4.23 billion) in 2021 and MAD 68.2 billion ($7.57 billion) in 2022.
As for financial operations, foreign direct investment (FDI) receipts are expected to be around 3.2% of the gross domestic products (GDP) after falling to 2.4% in 2020.
Taking into account the expected flows of external financing from the Treasury, official reserve assets would stand at MAD 310.3 billion ($34.46 billion) at the end of 2021, or the “equivalent of 6 months and 25 days of imports of goods and services,” according to the bank’s forecast.
Official reserves are also expected to increase at the end of 2022 to MAD 318.6 billion ($35.38 billion) or seven months of imports of goods and services.