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COVID-Driven Unemployment in Morocco

COVID-Driven Unemployment in Morocco

Tuesday, 29 September, 2020 - 09:30
Employees work on a Moroccan ventilator at a factory in Casablanca following an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Casablanca, Morocco April 10, 2020. REUTERS/Youssef Boudlal

The Moroccan Minister of Economy, Finance, and Administration Reform, Mohamed Benchaaboun, said Monday that the implementation of the 2020 finance bill has shown a MAD13.8 billion (USD1.38 billion) decline in revenues by the end of August, compared to the same period in 2019.

The minister estimated that the year 2021 would see a drop of MAD20 to MAD25 billion (USD2 to USD2.5 billion) in tax revenues compared to 2019.

He noted that the novel coronavirus pandemic increased the unemployment rate, expecting it to reach 13 percent in 2020 compared to 9.2 percent in 2019.

This is a result of forecasts that the gross domestic product will drop by 5 percent, and 227,000 jobs will be lost in the non-farm sector in addition to 78,000 jobs in the farm sector.

Further, Morocco had lost 589,000 jobs between the second two quarters of 2019 and 2020.

During the second quarter of 2020, the unemployment rate hiked by 4.2 percent reaching 15,6 percent in urban environments. Youths of ages ranging from 24 to 34 saw the highest rate of unemployment up to 22.6 percent.

In rural areas, unemployment rose to 7.2 percent.

The minister revealed that the financial bill would focus on social sectors, while creating 1,500 job opportunities in the health sector and 2,000 in the education sector.

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