Skip to main content
icon

Morocco Country profile

Economic, political and social situation, tax system, opportunities to invest and negotiate...

Morocco

Capital: Rabat

Population

Total Population: 33,546,150
Natural Increase: 1.0%
Density: 83 Inhabitants/km²
Urban Population: 64.6%
Population of main cities:Casablanca (3,563,000); Fez (1,187,000); Tangier (1,087,000); Salé (996,000); Marrakech (971,000); Oujda (572,000); Meknes (571,000); Rabat (533,000); Agadir (498,000); Kenitra (495,000)
Ethnic Origins: According to the High Commission for Planning of the Kingdom of Morocco, 99.75% of the Moroccan population are Moroccan nationals, which means that only 0.25% are foreign nationals (mainly nationals of France, Senegal, Algeria, Syria, Spain, Ivory Coast, Libya, and Italy). A large majority of the population has Amazigh (Berber) and/or Arab origins, but other ethnicities are also present in Morocco.
Official Language: Arabic and Tamazight (Berber)
Other Languages Spoken: 60% of the population speaks Moroccan Arabic while 30% to 40% speak Tamazight (Berber). Moreover, it is important to note that French is the second language of Morocco and occupies a very important place in public life. Finally, Spanish is also spoken in the north of the country. English is moslty used by Moroccans who have studied abroad (mainly in the United States).
Business Language(s): French is used in a commercial context with Arabic for administration.
Religion: Islam is the state religion, practiced by almost the entire population, but freedom of religion exists. 90% of Moroccans are Sunnis by faith, of the Malikian rite.
The day is punctuated by five prayer calls. During the month of Ramadan, the Moroccans fast, do not drink and smoke from sunrise to sunset.
Literacy Rate:52.3%
National Currency: Moroccan Dirham (MAD)

Country Overview

Area: 446,550 km²
Type of State: Morocco is a constitutional monarchy Kingdom with an elected parliament.
Type of Economy: A country with intermediate income (lower bracket) and an emerging financial market.
It has the greatest reserves and is the leading exporter of phosphate in the world; tourism is a key sector.
HDI*: 0.628/1
HDI (World Rank): 126/188

Note: (*) The HDI, Human Development Index, is an Indicator Which Synthesizes Several Data Such as Life Expectancy, Level of Education, Professional Careers, Access to Culture etc.

Telecommunication

Telephone Code:
To call from Morocco, dial 00
To call Morocco, dial +212 + 6 for mobile phones or 212 + 5 for fix phones.
Internet Suffix:.ma
Computers:2.5 per 100 Inhabitants
Telephone Lines:10.1 per 100 Inhabitants
Internet Users:55.0 per 100 Inhabitants
Access to Electricity: 100% of the Population

Foreign Trade in Figures

 
Foreign Trade Indicators20182019202020212022
Imports of Goods (million USD)51,03850,73443,83158,03471,807
Exports of Goods (million USD)28,60929,13227,15935,84341,481
Imports of Services (million USD)10,5139,6317,1408,57310,746
Exports of Services (million USD)18,63419,35313,86715,41621,981

Source: WTO – World Trade Organisation, Latest data available.

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

COVID-19 Country Response

Travel restrictions
Regularly updated travel information for all countries with regards to Covid-19 related entry regulations, flight bans, test and vaccines requirements is available on TravelDoc Infopage.
To find information about the current travel regulations, including health requirements, it is also advised to consult Travel Regulations Map provided and updated on a daily basis by IATA.
Import & export restrictions
A general overview of trade restrictions which were adopted by different countries during the COVID-19 pandemic is available on the International Trade Centre's COVID-19 Temporary Trade Measures webpage.
Economic recovery plan
For the general overview of the key economic policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic (fiscal, monetary and macroeconomic) undertaken by the government of Morocco, please consult the country's dedicated section in the IMF’s Policy Tracker platform.
Support plan for businesses
For an evaluation of impact of the Covid pandemic on SMEs and an inventory of country responses to foster SME resilience, refer to the OECD's SME Covid-19 Policy Responses document.
You can also consult the World Bank's Map of SME-Support Measures in Response to COVID-19.
 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Economic Outline | Political Outline

 

Economic Outline

Economic Overview

In recent years, the Moroccan economy has been characterised by macroeconomic stability and low levels of inflation, relying mostly on exports, a boom in private investment, and tourism. However, the COVID-19 shock has pushed the Moroccan economy into its first recession since 1995. The country’s GDP rebounded in 2021 but showed modest growth in 2022: based on the most recent projections from the IMF, the economy is estimated to have grown by 2.4% in 2023. This growth is fueled by a partial rebound in agricultural output, net exports, and services (particularly tourism). The recovery is anticipated to strengthen in the medium term, with real GDP growth forecasted to reach 3.6% in 2024 and 3.2% in 2025, as domestic demand gradually rebounds from recent shocks. Reconstruction efforts and new policy incentives are set to enhance investment, thereby supporting income and consumption, while the resurgence of agricultural production should contribute to the growth of rural employment.

The fiscal impact of the health and social protection reform and postponement of the liquefied petroleum gas and flour subsidy reform slowed the consolidation of the budget deficit, which was estimated at 5% of GDP in 2023. Modest revenue growth (+0.9% year-on-year through September) has been sustained by increased tax collections. However, government spending has experienced upward pressures (+7.2% year-on-year) due to the impact of the drought on food supply and high inflation. While gas subsidies were lower than budgeted, there were increases in subsidies for food and farmers, along with accelerated investment in water infrastructures (Fitch Ratings). The deficit is expected to decrease over the forecast horizon, to 4.4% this year and 3.8% in 2025 (IMF), with the debt-to-GDP ratio following a similar trend (from 69.7% in 2023 to 68.7% by 2025). After peaking in February, inflation averaged 6.3% in 2023, as energy prices declined and agriculture output improved. The projection indicates a gradual decrease to 3.5% in 2024 (IMF), influenced by reduced energy and food prices and the impact of rising interest rates. Key risks include prolonged droughts affecting agricultural production, a more pronounced slowdown in crucial European markets, and a potential further increase in commodity prices.

Albeit its high levels, the unemployment rate has been declining in recent years and averaged 12% in 2023. For 2024 and 2025, the IMF expects it to decrease to 11.7% and 11.6%, respectively. According to the Moroccan Higher Planning Commission, unemployment particularly affects the youth (15-24 years of age – at 38.2% as of June 2023 – latest data available), recent graduates, and women (19.8% each). The rate of poverty remains one of the highest in the Mediterranean region, with almost one-fifth of the population living near the poverty line. Finally, the GDP per capita (PPP) was estimated at USD 10,408 in 2023 by the IMF.

 
Main Indicators20222023 (E)2024 (E)2025 (E)2026 (E)
GDP (billions USD)130.91147.34157.40166.49175.33
GDP (Constant Prices, Annual % Change)1.32.43.63.23.2
GDP per Capita (USD)3,5703,9804,2124,4154,608
General Government Balance (in % of GDP)-5.1-5.0-4.4-3.8-3.5
General Government Gross Debt (in % of GDP)71.569.769.168.768.4
Inflation Rate (%)n/a6.33.52.92.4
Unemployment Rate (% of the Labour Force)11.812.011.711.611.6
Current Account (billions USD)-4.62-4.52-5.05-4.79-4.86
Current Account (in % of GDP)-3.5-3.1-3.2-2.9-2.8

Source: IMF – World Economic Outlook Database, Latest data available.

Note : (E) Estimated data

 

Main Sectors of Industry

Given the richness of Morocco's soil, the agricultural sector is pivotal for the country’s economy, employing 35% of the workforce and contributing 10.5% of GDP (World Bank, latest data available). Barley, wheat, citrus fruits, grapes, vegetables, argan, olives, livestock and wine are the country's main crops. In recent years, the government has focused on the sector through its "Green Morocco Plan" and the Agricultural Development Fund. The country’s cereal production is highly variable, with local dams providing irrigation for only 15% of the agricultural land and rainfed agricultural production accounting for 85% of the aggregate output (FAO). According to preliminary data by the national statistical office, the added value of the primary sector in volume, adjusted for seasonal variations, recorded an increase of 8.9% in the third quarter of 2023 compared to a decrease of 13.8% during the same period one year earlier, thanks to a rise in agricultural activity by 5.7%, and in fishing by 80.7%. Overall, the agricultural sector recorded a forecasted growth rate of 3% for the 2022-2023 campaign, compared to -14.8% in the previous one, showing significant resilience despite unfavourable weather conditions and cyclical imbalances.

Industry contributes 25.5% of the GDP and employs 23% of the workforce. The main sectors are textiles, leather goods, food processing, oil refining, and electronic assembly. However, new sectors have been booming: chemistry, automotive parts, computers, electronics and the aerospace industry. The automotive industry, in particular, has been growing in the last decade, with double-digit annual growth in terms of job creation and exports (becoming the country’s main exporting sector and Africa’s main automotive hub). Overall, the manufacturing sector is estimated to account for 15% of GDP. The emergence of new industries should allow the country to reduce its dependence on the agricultural sector. Morocco’s industrial sector is the largest beneficiary of foreign direct investment. The country has around 75% of the world's estimated reserves of phosphates, and the mineral sector accounts for almost 30% of exports (Oxford Business Group). Mining accounts for 10% of GDP, of which 90% derives from phosphates. The manufacturing industries' activity experienced a modest increase of 0.6% in 2023, compared to 0.3% the previous year. This development was mainly attributed to the decline in the chemical industry by 4.1%, weakened by the decrease in the production of phosphate fertilizers, and the slowdown in the agro-food and textile industries due to the rise in production costs (National Statistical Office).

The services sector accounts for more than half of GDP (54.5%) and gives employment to 43% of the workforce. It is spearheaded by real estate and tourism, which has been very dynamic in recent years (accounting for around 11% of GDP and hitting a record of nearly 13 million arrivals in 2019). Although tertiary activities recorded a downward trend following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, with a particularly weak tourism performance, improvements were achieved in 2022 and 2023: tourist arrivals in Morocco reached 13.2 million during the first eleven months of 2023, surpassing their pre-Covid-19 pandemic levels. Finally, the Moroccan banking sector is dominated by locally owned banks, which account for more than 80% of industry assets (U.S. Department of Commerce).

 
Breakdown of Economic Activity By SectorAgricultureIndustryServices
Employment By Sector (in % of Total Employment)34.622.842.6
Value Added (in % of GDP)10.727.252.3
Value Added (Annual % Change)-15.3-0.45.3

Source: World Bank, Latest data available.

 

Indicator of Economic Freedom

The Economic freedom index measure ten components of economic freedom, grouped into four broad categories or pillars of economic freedom: Rule of Law (property rights, freedom from corruption); Limited Government (fiscal freedom, government spending); Regulatory Efficiency (business freedom, labour freedom, monetary freedom); and Open Markets (trade freedom, investment freedom, financial freedom). Each of the freedoms within these four broad categories is individually scored on a scale of 0 to 100. A country’s overall economic freedom score is a simple average of its scores on the 10 individual freedoms.

Score:
63,3/100
World Rank:
81
Regional Rank:
9

Economic freedom in the world (interactive map)
Source: Index of Economic Freedom, Heritage Foundation

 

Business environment ranking

The business rankings model measures the quality or attractiveness of the business environment in the 82 countries covered by The Economist Intelligence Unit’s Country Forecast reports. It examines ten separate criteria or categories, covering the political environment, the macroeconomic environment, market opportunities, policy towards free enterprise and competition, policy towards foreign investment, foreign trade and exchange controls, taxes, financing, the labour market and infrastructure.

Score:
5.48/10
World Rank:
61/82

Source: The Economist Intelligence Unit - Business Environment Rankings 2020-2024

 

Country Risk

See the country risk analysis provided by Coface.

 

Political Outline

Current Political Leaders
King: MOHAMED VI (since 30 July 1999) - hereditary
Prime Minister: Aziz AKHANNOUCH (since 7 October 2021)
Next Election Dates
House of Representatives: 30 September 2026
House of Councillors: 31 October 2027
Current Political Context
King Mohammed VI – who has been ruling the country since 1999 - appointed a new government comprising a coalition of liberal and conservative parties, led by Aziz Akhannouch, after the victory of his National Rally of Independents (RNI) party in the general elections that were held in September 2021, which revealed the collapse of the Islamist Justice and Development Party (PJD) that had led the government over the previous two legislative terms (from 125 seats in the assembly to only 13 seats out of 395). A new coalition government was thus formed by the liberal RNI and Authenticity and Modernity (PAM) parties together with the conservative Istiqlal. The three parties together enjoy a comfortable majority, holding 270 seats compared to the 198 needed to pass legislation, with a shared common platform focusing on economic and social reforms. The coalition government published its three-year budget plans as part of the 2023 budget, focusing on employment creation measures and an extension of social programmes while also seeking a reduction of the deficit.
In 2023, despite political stability, the country faced rising discontent over a high unemployment rate and the elevated cost of living due to recurrent droughts impacting harvests. Moreover, an earthquake claimed 3,000 lives and left over 15,000 homeless in the Atlas and Marrakech regions. The government's budget plan prioritized emergency aid, reconstruction, and social-economic development in the affected region.
In 2024, tensions with the Polisario Front and Algeria will persist, centring on the Western Sahara. Israel's recognition of Moroccan sovereignty in July 2023 and Spain's acknowledgement of the autonomy plan in 2022 are contentious decisions. The former is part of an unpopular alignment between the countries, including the United States, on defence matters, although the process could be hindered by the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas conflict.
Main Political Parties
Multi-party system, consisting of numerous parties. Parties work with each other to form coalition governments.

- National Rally of Independents (RNI): centrist, relatively inclined towards social liberalism. Was the leading party in the last elections, heads the ruling coalition
- Authenticity and Modernity Party (PAM): modernist and reform-oriented, formed by an advisor to the King and former Interior Minister
- "Istiqlal" Independence Party (PI): conservative nationalist
- Socialist Union of Popular Forces (USFP): left-wing socialist
- People's Movement (MP): centrist, dominated by Berber (Tamazight) speakers, but without a distinct Berber agenda
- Constitutional Union (UC): economically liberal, conservative on societal matters
- Justice and Development Party (PJD): moderate Islamist, was the ruling party between 2011-21
- Party of Progress and Socialism (PPS): socialist, formerly communist
- Democratic and Social Movement (MDS): social democracy, royalism
Type of State
Morocco is a constitutional monarchy Kingdom with an elected parliament.
Executive Power
The executive power is shared between the government and the King. The Prime Minister is promoted to head of government and as such presides over the Governing Council, but the Council of Ministers continues to be chaired by the King. The Government Council consists of all the ministers, deputy ministers and other Secretaries of State. It discusses public and sectoral policies, the commitment of the government's responsibility to the House of Representatives, current issues related to human rights and public order, bills, decrees, draft regulatory decrees and the appointment of secretaries and central directors of the public administration, university presidents, deans and directors of schools and higher institutes. The Governing Council only has deliberative power concerning the general policy of the State, international conventions, and the finance bill. The Council of Ministers, where only the head of government and the ministers sit, is responsible for the strategic direction of the state policy, the revision of the Constitution, drafting of organic laws, general guidance of the finance bill, amnesty, draft texts related to the military, the declaration of a state of siege, the declaration of war.
Legislative Power
The Parliament comprises the House of Representatives (395 deputies elected by universal direct suffrage for 5 years) and the House of Councillors (120 members elected by indirect universal suffrage for 6 years).
The Parliament votes the law; any bill must be successively examined by the two Houses. It moreover shares the initiative of the laws with the Prime Minister.
 

Indicator of Freedom of the Press

The world rankings, published annually, measures violations of press freedom worldwide. It reflects the degree of freedom enjoyed by journalists, the media and digital citizens of each country and the means used by states to respect and uphold this freedom. Finally, a note and a position are assigned to each country. To compile this index, Reporters Without Borders (RWB) prepared a questionnaire incorporating the main criteria (44 in total) to assess the situation of press freedom in a given country. This questionnaire was sent to partner organisations,150 RWB correspondents, journalists, researchers, jurists and human rights activists. It includes every kind of direct attacks against journalists and digital citizens (murders, imprisonment, assault, threats, etc.) or against the media (censorship, confiscation, searches and harassment etc.).

World Rank:
136/180
 

Indicator of Political Freedom

The Indicator of Political Freedom provides an annual evaluation of the state of freedom in a country as experienced by individuals. The survey measures freedom according to two broad categories: political rights and civil liberties. The ratings process is based on a checklist of 10 political rights questions (on Electoral Process, Political Pluralism and Participation, Functioning of Government) and 15 civil liberties questions (on Freedom of Expression, Belief, Associational and Organizational Rights, Rule of Law, Personal Autonomy and Individual Rights). Scores are awarded to each of these questions on a scale of 0 to 4, where a score of 0 represents the smallest degree and 4 the greatest degree of rights or liberties present. The total score awarded to the political rights and civil liberties checklist determines the political rights and civil liberties rating. Each rating of 1 through 7, with 1 representing the highest and 7 the lowest level of freedom, corresponds to a range of total scores.

Ranking:
Partly Free
Political Freedom:
5/7
Civil Liberties:
5/7

Political freedom in the world (interactive map)
Source: Freedom in the World Report, Freedom House

 

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Foreign Trade in Figures | Trade Compliance | Standards

 

Foreign Trade in Figures

Morocco is very open to foreign trade, which represents 101% of its GDP (World Bank, latest data available). According to the latest figures from the Office des Changes, in terms of sectors, in 2022 exports were led by natural and chemical fertilizers (27.1%), cars (26.11%), agricultural (19%), and textile products (10.3%); whereas energy products were the main imports (20.8%), followed by wheat (3.5%), vehicle parts (3.2%), plastics and ammonia (2.9% each).

The country's main trade partners were Spain (19.6%) and France (18.7%), followed by Italy (4.5%) and Germany (4.1%). Spain was also the main supplier (14.1%), ahead of France (10.6%), China (10%), and Turkey (5.2% - data OdC for 2021). While European Union countries were the main trading partners (56.6% of total exports, 45.4% of imports), Morocco has also been strengthening its commercial integration with the rest of Africa, namely through the ratification of the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement.

Morocco has a structurally negative trade balance, which continues to deplete its foreign exchange reserves. In 2022, the overall trade deficit was estimated at 11.5% of GDP by the World Bank (from 9.3% one year earlier). According to WTO data, in 2022 Morocco exported USD 41.4 billion worth of goods, recording an increase of 15.7% year-on-year; whereas the value of its imports stood at USD 71.8 billion, 23.7% more than the previous year. Morocco is a net exporter of services, with USD 21.9 billion in exports (+42.5% y-o-y, thanks to the good performance of the tourism sector) against USD 10.7 billion in imports (+25.3% y-o-y). The latest figures from the Office des Changes show that in the first six months of 2023, the merchandise exports of Morocco showed a significant increase, reaching MAD 221.3 billion, representing a rise of 1.9% compared to the previous year. This growth was primarily driven by the automotive, textile and leather, as well as the electronics and electricity sectors. Goods imports recorded a decrease of 1.6%, primarily attributable to the decline in purchases of semi-finished products, energy products, and raw materials. Overall, Morocco's imports totalled MAD 359.5 billion in the period under review.

 
Foreign Trade Values20182019202020212022
Imports of Goods (million USD)51,03850,73443,83158,03471,807
Exports of Goods (million USD)28,60929,13227,15935,84341,481
Imports of Services (million USD)10,5139,6317,1408,57310,746
Exports of Services (million USD)18,63419,35313,86715,41621,981

Source: World Trade Organisation (WTO), Latest data available.

 
Foreign Trade Indicators20182019202020212022
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP)77.376.068.875.098.6
Trade Balance (million USD)-20,253-19,771-15,540-19,967-26,462
Trade Balance (Including Service) (million USD)-12,131-10,049-8,813-13,125-15,227
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change)4.82.1-11.911.817.7
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change)3.85.1-15.08.721.5
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP)43.441.938.142.055.1
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP)33.834.130.832.943.5

Source: World Bank, Latest data available.

 
Foreign Trade Forecasts20232024 (e)2025 (e)2026 (e)2027 (e)
Volume of exports of goods and services (Annual % change)-8.73.33.63.42.8
Volume of imports of goods and services (Annual % change)-5.52.62.62.42.2

Source: IMF, World Economic Outlook, Latest data available.

Note: (e) Estimated Data

 

Main Partner Countries

Main Customers
(% of Exports)
2022
Spain19.6%
France19.1%
India6.4%
Italy4.5%
Brazil4.0%
United Kingdom3.8%
United States3.4%
Germany3.2%
Türkiye2.6%
Netherlands2.1%
Main Suppliers
(% of Imports)
2022
Spain14.1%
France10.6%
China10.0%
United States7.4%
Saudi Arabia6.5%
Türkiye5.2%
Italy4.5%
Germany4.1%
Russia3.1%
United Arab Emirates2.0%

Source: UN Comtrade Database, Latest data available.

 

Main Products

42.2 bn USD of products exported in 2022
Mineral or chemical fertilisers containing two or three of the fertilising elements nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium; other fertilisers (excl. pure animal or vegetable fertilisers or mineral or chemical nitrogenous, phosphatic or potassic fertilisers); animal, vegetable, mineral or chemical fertilisers in tablets or similar forms or in packages of a gross weight of 16.2%
Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, incl. station wagons and racing cars (excl. motor vehicles of heading 8702)12.4%
Insulated "incl. enamelled or anodised" wire, cable "incl. coaxial cable" and other insulated electric conductors, whether or not fitted with connectors; optical fibre cables, made up of individually sheathed fibres, whether or not assembled with electric conductors or fitted with connectors9.1%
Diphosphorus pentaoxide; phosphoric acid; polyphosphoric acids, whether or not chemically defined5.3%
Women's or girls' suits, ensembles, jackets, blazers, dresses, skirts, divided skirts, trousers, bib and brace overalls, breeches and shorts (excl. knitted or crocheted, wind-jackets and similar articles, slips, petticoats and panties, tracksuits, ski suits and swimwear)3.2%
Parts of aircraft and spacecraft of heading 8801 or 8802, n.e.s.3.1%
Natural calcium phosphates and natural aluminium calcium phosphates, natural and phosphatic chalk3.1%
Tomatoes, fresh or chilled2.4%
Parts and accessories for tractors, motor vehicles for the transport of ten or more persons, motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, motor vehicles for the transport of goods and special purpose motor vehicles of heading 8701 to 8705, n.e.s.2.4%
Molluscs, fit for human consumption, even smoked, whether in shell or not, live, fresh, chilled, frozen, dried, salted or in brine; flours, meals and pellets of molluscs, fit for human consumption2.2%
72.6 bn USD of products imported in 2022
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals (excl. crude); preparations containing >= 70% by weight of petroleum oils or of oils obtained from bituminous minerals, these oils being the basic constituents of the preparations, n.e.s.; waste oils containing mainly petroleum or bituminous minerals13.1%
Petroleum gas and other gaseous hydrocarbons3.6%
Wheat and meslin3.5%
Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, incl. station wagons and racing cars (excl. motor vehicles of heading 8702)2.9%
Ammonia, anhydrous or in aqueous solution2.9%
Coal; briquettes, ovoids and similar solid fuels manufactured from coal2.9%
Parts and accessories for tractors, motor vehicles for the transport of ten or more persons, motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, motor vehicles for the transport of goods and special purpose motor vehicles of heading 8701 to 8705, n.e.s.2.7%
Sulphur of all kinds (excl. sublimed sulphur, precipitated sulphur and colloidal sulphur)2.5%
Parts of aircraft and spacecraft of heading 8801 or 8802, n.e.s.2.0%
Insulated "incl. enamelled or anodised" wire, cable "incl. coaxial cable" and other insulated electric conductors, whether or not fitted with connectors; optical fibre cables, made up of individually sheathed fibres, whether or not assembled with electric conductors or fitted with connectors2.0%

Source: UN Comtrade Database, Latest data available.

 
 
 

Main Services

20.1 bn USD of services exported in 2022
Travel
45.91%
Other business services
20.83%
Transportation
17.50%
Communications services
5.32%
Computer and information services
5.22%
Government services
2.10%
Construction services
1.50%
Insurance services
0.66%
Cultural and recreational services
0.64%
Financial services
0.31%
Royalties and license fees
0.01%
10.6 bn USD of services imported in 2022
Transportation
49.09%
Travel
17.85%
Other business services
11.97%
Government services
8.02%
Computer and information services
4.44%
Construction services
2.78%
Royalties and license fees
1.67%
Communications services
1.49%
Insurance services
1.40%
Cultural and recreational services
0.69%
Financial services
0.61%

Source: United Nations Statistics Division, Latest data available.

Trade Compliance

International Conventions
Member of the World Trade Organization (WTO)
Party to the Kyoto Protocol
Party to the Washington Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora
Party to the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal
International Economic Cooperation
Morocco is a member of the following international economic organisations: IMF, Development (AFESD), ICC, Arab Maghreb Union (AMU), WTO, Arab Monetary Fund (AMF), G-77, Arab League, among others. For the full list of economic and other international organisations in which participates Morocco click here. International organisation membership of Morocco is also outlined here.
Free Trade Agreements
The complete and up-to-date list of Free Trade Agreements signed by Morocco can be consulted here.
Party of the ATA Convention on Temporary Admissions and Use of the Carnets
Yes

As a Reminder, the ATA is a System Allowing the Free Movement of Goods Across Frontiers and Their Temporary Admission Into a Customs Territory With Relief From Duties and Taxes. The Goods Are Covered By a Single Document Known as the ATA Carnet That is Secured By an International Guarantee System.
Party of the TIR Convention
Yes

As a Reminder, the TIR Convention and its Transit Regime Contribute to the Facilitation of International Transport, Especially International Road Transport, Not Only in Europe and the Middle East, But Also in Other Parts of the World, Such as Africa and Latin America.
Accompanying Documents For Imports
Goods dispatched to Morocco must be accompanied by the following documents:
- the unique data folder
- commercial invoice in triplicates.
- a plant health certificate for fruits and vegetables
- a sanitary certificate, a radioactive non-contamination certificate and a slaughtering certificate according to Islamic rites for meats
- EUR1 Form to benefit preferential rates reserved for the European Union
- transport documents and the packing list
Free-trade zones
Instituted by Law 19-94 (Dahir No. 1-95-1 dated January 26, 1995), export processing zones are identified areas of the customs territory where they are authorized, exempted from customs regulations, foreign trade and exchange control, all industrial and commercial export activities as well as linked service activities. The free zones are: Export Processing Zone of Tangier; Free Zones at Tanger Med Ksar el Majaz Mellousa 1 and 2; Free Zone in Dakhla and Laayoune; Free Storage Zone of hydrocarbons: Kebdana and Nador; Export Processing Zone in Kenitra. The Moroccan authorities have officially started the construction of the new free zone in Castillejos, next to the border with Ceuta.
For Further Information
Customs and Excise and Indirect Taxes Service (only in French)
Moroccan Center for Export Promotion in French.
Non Tariff Barriers
Pursuant to provisions of article 1 of the law no. 13-89 relating to foreign trade, goods are free to import. However, there are quantitative restrictions on imports relating to certain particular products such as powders and explosives, secondhand clothes or the retreads and used tyres, which require import licenses. The list of goods subject to quantitative restriction is available on the Moroccan Customs.
Sectors or Products For Which Commercial Disagreements Have Been Registered With the WTO
None
Assessment of Commercial Policy
Morocco’s commercial policy, as seen by the WTO
Barriers to exchanges, inventoried by the United States
Barriers to exchanges, inventoried by the EU

 

Standards

Integration in the International Standards Network
 Member of the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO).
Obligation to Use Standards
Voluntary
Classification of Standards
For standards of national origin: NM + business sector + sub-sector + index of classification - then possibly the year
For standards depicting international standards: NM + ISO + the ISO standard number - then possibly the year
Assessment of the System of Standardization
Standardisation is a recent activity in Morocco. Excepting few export businesses, managers do not practice it.
Standards production has nevertheless soared during these last years: there were 5,778 standards in end 2005 against 926 ten years earlier. They are particularly concentrated in the Building and Public Works sector. The responsible body for standard wants to increase the number of certified product norms by 15 to 20% within the next three years.
The standards are inspired generally from French standards and are largely reconciled with international standards.
Online Consultation of Standards
Online Standards, the IMANOR catalog
Certification Organisations
Morocco Overview The Moroccan Industrial Standardization

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Business culture | Opening Hours

 

Business culture

The Fundamental Principles of Business Culture
The mix of Arabic, Muslim, Berber and French cultures has given Morocco a complex business etiquette. As most Moroccans are practising Muslims, Islamic values have an influence on the business culture. Nonetheless, Morocco is also a former French protectorate and many of its business practises are based on the French system. As in most other countries around the Mediterranean Sea, strong hierarchy and close personal relationships are the outstanding characteristics of the Moroccan business culture.

Decision-making in Moroccan companies is mostly top-down and employee participation is rather limited. Junior employees may be consulted; however, their input does not necessarily impact the decision. Consequently, bosses usually have the sole responsibility for decisions taken internally. Decisions are not reached quickly and require several rounds of negotiations.

Personal relationships play an important role in striking a deal with Moroccan business partners. Most prefer to get to know their foreign counterparts before they do business with them.

First Contact
As Moroccans can be reluctant to do business with people they do not know, it is important to make a good impression when meeting Moroccan business contacts for the first time. During a first meeting, Moroccan partners may ask questions that could be considered personal or irrelevant in Western societies. Moroccans from the higher socio-economic class may be more reserved and do not necessarily appreciate people being too familiar when they first meet. It is advised to bring along an interpreter as most negotiations are conducted in French. As working hours are reduced during the month of Ramadan, it is advisable to set up first meetings before or after this period.
Time Management
Moroccan business contacts have a looser sense of time than in most western countries. Punctuality is not necessarily regarded as a virtue. Nevertheless, arriving on time to meetings is important even though you may be kept waiting. A negotiation agenda is rarely timed in advance, and meetings can start and end much later than initially scheduled.
Greetings and Titles
Greeting a Moroccan business contact varies based on their gender. When meeting someone from the same sex, handshakes, usually on the loose side, are common. Women could also meet each other with kisses on the cheek, usually alternating three times. When meeting someone from the opposite sex, it is best to allow your counterpart to extend their hand. Devout Muslims are most likely to refrain from shaking hands with someone from the opposite sex. In that case, a nod and a smile should suffice. It is advisable to address your business partners with Mr., Mrs or Miss unless you are on a first name basis.
Gift Policy
Exchanging gifts after a first business meeting is not too common. Nevertheless, Moroccan business partners may invite you to their home once they get to know you and, in that case, it is strongly recommended to bring a gift. It is appropriate to bring fruit, pastries and/or flowers. Avoid gifting alcohol unless you are sure that your local counterpart drinks alcohol.
Dress Code
Business attire is formal and tends to be conservative for both sexes. Men should wear dark business suits, while it is recommended for women to dress conservatively (dark trouser suits, long skirts and dresses which cover most of the arms and legs). Both sexes are expected to be well groomed.
Business Cards
There is no formal protocol surrounding the exchange of business cards. It is advisable to give business cards that are in French and/or Arabic on at least one side. It is also recommended to exchange business cards with your right hand as the left hand is considered unclean as in most other Muslim countries.
Meetings Management
Business meetings tend to be long and their time schedule is rather unpredictable. It is recommended to bring an interpreter, as most negotiations are conducted in French (also Arabic, less so in English). Most meetings start with small talk. Appropriate topics include: family, sports, weather. Avoid talking about sex, religion and the Moroccan royal family.

Moroccans do not usually engage in direct communication, especially in a negative context. Saving face is important to Moroccans and they are most likely to play down any disagreements but also their own failure to honour a commitment. It is advised to double-check and look for subtle allusions to disagreements and negative answers. Consequently, hard selling and confrontation will not be received lightly.

Foreign business contacts should ensure the most senior person in the room pays close attention to their point of view and makes their offer directly to that person. Negotiations, especially when discussing pricing, may take some time, as Moroccans always want to have the last word and feel that they came out on top. Therefore, it is important to start off at a price level that allows you to come down and give the impression that they have won the negotiation. Interrupting someone is quite commonplace and not considered rude. As people tend to talk at the same time, it is recommended to come back to the conversation a bit later in order to ensure that everyone has understood what you were saying.

Moroccan business partners may invite you to dinner either at their own place or in a restaurant. In both cases, it is important to dress smartly and ensure your spouse is actually invited to the dinner as well. If invited to dinner at home, you should take off your shoes and greet everyone. Avoid eating with your left hand as it is considered unclean in Moroccan/Muslim culture. Dining can be done around a communal plate. If that is the case eat from the portion of the plate closest to you.

Sources for Further Information
Culture Crossing - Morocco Business Etiquette
Careeraddict - Moroccan Business Culture
 
 

Opening Hours

Opening Hours and Days
Banks: 8:15 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and from 02:15 p.m. to 05:30 p.m.
Public bodies: from 8:30 a.m. to 04:00 p.m. continuous
Businesses: from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and from 03:00 p.m. to 08:00 p.m. from Monday to Saturday.
On Friday, all institutions are closed from 11:00 a.m. to 03:00 p.m.
 

Public Holidays

Manifesto of IndependenceJanuary 11
Labour DayMay 1
National holidayMay 23
Feast of the ThroneJuly 30
Oued Ed-Dahab Allegiance dayAugust 14
The King and the People's Revolution dayAugust 20
Youth dayAugust 21
Anniversary of the Green MarchNovember 6
Independence dayNovember 18
Fatih Muharram (First day of the new Islamic calendar year)Varies each year
Aid al-FitrVaries each year
Aid al-AdhaVaries each year
Prophet Mohammed's birth anniversaryVaries each year
 

Periods When Companies Usually Close

Summer vacationsAugust start
 
Hotel reservation websites
Office Holidays

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Corporate Taxes | Accounting Rules | Consumption Taxes | Individual Taxes | Double Taxation Treaties | Sources of Fiscal Information

 

Corporate Taxes

Tax Base For Resident and Foreign Companies
Moroccan residency status applies if a company is incorporated in Morocco or its place of effective management is in Morocco.
 

Tax Rate

Corporate income tax rates2023
From MAD 0 to 300,0012.5%
From MAD 300,000 to 1 million20%
From MAD 1 million to 100 million28.25%
Above MAD 1 million32%
Companies carrying out industrial activitiesFrom MAD 0 to 1 million: 24.5%
Above MAD 1 million: 32%
Minimum contribution0.25%
0.15% for operations carried out by commercial companies for sales of petroleum products, gas, butter, oil, sugar, flour, water, electricity, and medicines
Social solidarity contribution on the profits of companies with net profit equal to or greater than MAD 1 million (calculated on the net taxable profit of the previous fiscal year)
  • 1.5% for companies with net profit of MAD 1 million to less than 5 million;
  • 2.5% for companies with net profit of MAD 5 million to less than 10 million;
  • 3.5% for companies with net profit of MAD 10 million to less than 40 million; and
  • 5.0% for companies with net profit of MAD 40 million or more
WHT rate applicable to income from shares, units and similar income13.75% in 2023
Special rates

20% for:

  • Companies with "CFC" status
  • Companies operating in Industrial Acceleration Zones (ZAI)
  • Companies created as from January 1st, 2023, and which commit to the framework of an agreement signed with the state to invest MAD 1.5 billion in tangible assets and maintain it for 10 years (with the exception of public establishments and companies and their subsidiaries)
Companies with Casablanca FC statusExempt for the first five years following the date of their incorporation
 
Tax Rate For Foreign Companies
Moroccan tax applies territorially. Foreign companies are liable on Moroccan-sourced income, even when this is of an occasional nature, at the same rates as local companies (unless preferential treatment is granted under foreign investment schemes).
A branch tax of 15% applies to the net income transferred by the Moroccan branch to foreign entities.
Capital Gains Taxation
Capital gains are treated as non-current income and taxed at the normal corporate tax rate.
Non-resident companies are exempt from capital gains derived from the sale of stocks listed on the Casablanca stock exchange, excluding the shares of real estate entities.
For the years 2023, 2024 and 2025, companies will benefit from a 70% deduction on the net capital gain resulting from the sale of fixed assets, excluding land and buildings.
Main Allowable Deductions and Tax Credits
Expenses incurred in connection with business activities are generally deductible unless specifically excluded. Start-up expenses shall be capitalised and depreciated for tax purposes over a five-year period. Interest on loans granted by direct shareholders is deductible if the capital is fully paid in, limited to the share capital equity and the interest rate provided annually by the Ministry of Finance.

Charitable contributions made by companies are deductible only if they are granted to foundations and societies explicitly provided by law. In the case of contributions made to the community enterprise, the deduction is capped at 0.2% of the turnover.

Tax losses may be carried forward for a period of four years from the end of the loss-making accounting period. However, the portion of a loss that relates to depreciation may be carried forward indefinitely. The carryback of losses is not permitted. Foreign tax relief is provided for foreign-sourced income. Bad debts that are definitively non-recoverable are treated as deductible losses. Taxes are generally deductible (except for corporate income tax).

Morocco offers tax incentives in the form of tax exemption or taxation at more advantageous rates for local and foreign investors. Check the Corporate income tax section for further details.
Other Corporate Taxes
Registration duties between 1% to 6% are due on all written or verbal conventions, such as property transfer of real estate, shares, or rights; company set-up; equity increase; and goodwill transfer (6%). A flat rate of MAD 200 is also applicable to specific operations and conventions.The acquisition of real property is subject to a 1% real estate tax.

A municipal tax ("taxe de services communaux") is levied at a rate of 10.5% of the rental value of properties located in urban areas and 6.5% for properties located on the outskirts of cities.

The business tax ("taxe professionnelle") consists of a tax on the rental value of business premises (rented or owned) and fixed assets. The tax rates range from 10% to 30%, with an exemption for the five first years of activity. The rental value is exempted for the portion of the cost exceeding MAD 50 million.

A Payroll tax (called professional training tax) is imposed on the gross monthly remuneration of employees that are subject to social security contributions, at a rate of 1.6%. Morocco's mandatory social security regime is managed by the CNSS (Caisse Nationale de Sécurité Sociale). Employers' contributions are as follows: family allocation 6.40%; social allocation 8.60% (with a computation base capped at MAD 6,000); professional tax 1.60%; mandatory medical care 4.11%.

Other Domestic Resources
General Tax Administration
 

Country Comparison For Corporate Taxation

 Morocco
Number of Payments of Taxes per Year6.0
Time Taken For Administrative Formalities (Hours)155.0
Total Share of Taxes (% of Profit)45.8

Source: The World Bank - Doing Business, Latest data available.

Accounting Rules

 

Accounting System

Accounting Standards
All banks and similar financial institutions need to file using IFRS Standards. All companies listed on the Casablanca Stock Exchange other than banks and similar financial institutions are required to choose between IFRSs and Moroccan GAAP.
Accounting Regulation Bodies
National Council of Accounting (Link in French)
Accounting Law
Companies Law of 1999, Law 15-89 1993 on the regulation of the profession of Chartered Accountants
Difference Between National and International Standards (IAS/IFRS)
Moroccan GAAP, which are significantly different from IFRS Standards, are no longer required for domestic or foreign public companies as the only available financial reporting framework. In fact, banks and similar financial institutions are required to file using IFRS standards. All companies listed on the Casablanca Stock Exchange other than banks and similar financial institutions are required to choose between IFRSs and Moroccan GAAP.
 

Accounting Practices

Tax Year
The calendar year normally is the fiscal year, although a company may opt for a different fiscal year.
Accounting Reports
Moroccan Institute of Chartered Accountants aims to converge the Moroccan Standards on Auditing with International Standards on Auditing (ISA) for statutory audits by December 2017.
Publication Requirements
The balance sheet describes separately the asset and liabilities items of the business.
The income and expense account summarizes the incomes and expenses of the financial year without considering their date of cashing or payment.
The management balances report describes the formation of the net income and that of self-financing.
The funds flow statement highlights the financial growth of the company during the financial year by describing the resources provided and jobs provided from it.
The additional details report supplements and comments on information provided by the balance sheet, the income and expense account, the management balances report and the funds flow statement.

The account should be certified annually.

 

Accountancy Profession

Accountants
Generally auditors, chartered accountants and public accountants are distinguished.
The government auditors necessarily belong to the public accountants corporation.
The chartered accountants play the role of financial, accounting, legal and tax consultant in companies.
Audit relates more to an internal management audit of the company.
Professional Accountancy Bodies
Moroccan Institute of Chartered Accountants
Moroccan Institute of Internal Auditors
Member of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC)
Morocco is a member of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC).
 
 

Consumption Taxes

Nature of the Tax
VAT - Value-Added Tax (Taxe sur la Valeur Ajoutée - TVA)
Standard Rate
20%
Reduced Tax Rate
A reduced rate of 10% applies to petroleum products; banking transactions; hotel operations; restaurant operations; sales and delivery operations relating to art objects; edible fluid oils; solar water heaters and photovoltaic panels.

The VAT rate for transport, butter, services rendered by any direct selling agent or insurance broker in respect of contracts brought by it to an insurance business, and electricity is 14%.

A reduced rate of 7% applies to water; rental of water and electricity meters; pharmaceutical products and non-recoverable packaging of pharmaceutical products.

Zero-rated items include exported goods and services; goods placed under customs suspensive regime; fertilizers; machinery for exclusively agricultural use; investment goods recorded as fixed assets, acquired by taxpayers, for a period of 36 months from the start of the activity, excluding vehicles acquired by car rental agencies.

Exclusion From Taxation
Exempt items include sales, other than for consumption on the spot, of goods including fresh, frozen, whole or cut fish products; sales of recovered metals and water pumps that use solar energy or any other renewable energy used in the agricultural sector; services provided by insurance and reinsurance companies.
Method of Calculation, Declaration and Settlement
VAT is levied on the net sale price of the supply of goods and services in Morocco and on import transactions. All persons subject to VAT must make a declaration of existence within 30 days of the start of operations to be able to register for VAT purposes. Generally, VAT returns must be filed on a monthly basis (quarterly in some cases).
Small individual manufacturers and service providers with an annual turnover below MAD 500,000 enter the scope of VAT (although they will be exempt, with no right to deduct input VAT - does not apply to companies).
Other Consumption Taxes
Excise duties are levied on several products, including alcoholic beverages, energy drinks, tobacco, sugar, oil products, lubricants, etc. Plane tickets for international flights departing from Moroccan airports are taxed at MAD 100 for Economy class and MAD 400 for Business and First class.

Individual Taxes

Tax Base For Residents and Non-Residents
An individual is considered to be resident in Morocco if: he/she has a permanent home in the country; he/she has the centre of economic interest or carries on professional activities in Morocco; or stays in the country for more than 183 days within any period of 365 days.
 

Tax Rate

Progressive income taxFrom 0 to 38%
Up to MAD 30,0000%
From MAD 30,001 to 50,00010%
From MAD 50,001 to 60,00020%
From MAD 60,001 to 80,00030%
From MAD 80,001 to 180,00034%
Above MAD 180,00038%
 
Allowable Deductions and Tax Credits
The deductions from gross salary concern mainly social security contributions, retirement contributions, and a lump-sum deduction equal to 25% of the gross salary for incomes not exceeding MAD 78,000 (with a ceiling of MAD 35,000 per year).
The deduction applicable to pensions and life annuities is set at 70% of the gross taxable amount not exceeding MAD 168,000.

Charitable contributions are deductible if granted to organisms and societies expressly provided by the tax law. Loan interests relating to the acquisition of the main house are tax-deductible up to the limit of 10% of the taxable global revenue.

As per the provisions of the 2023 finance act, certain indemnities such as dismissal indemnity, compensation for voluntary departure, and compensation for damages awarded in the event of dismissal are exempt from taxation up to a maximum limit of MAD 1 million. However, if an individual receives multiple indemnities, the combined total amount of such indemnities exempted from income tax cannot surpass the aforementioned limit of 1 million.

Professional expenses incurred in the operation of the business are generally deductible unless specifically excluded.

Special Expatriate Tax Regime
Individuals with their main homes in Morocco are taxed on the totality of their incomes. Non-resident individuals are taxed only on Moroccan-sourced income.
There are no special regimes for expatriates (unless a double taxation treaty applies).
Capital Tax Rate
Capital gains from the sale of property are generally taxed at 20% as part of ordinary income, at a minimum of 3% of the selling price. The sale of a resident company's share is taxed at 10%.
Capital gains derived from the disposal of immovable property generally are subject to a 20% tax, the same as those derived from the disposal of shares. Capital gains derived from the disposal of a residence used as principal residence for at least six years are exempt from taxation.

Municipal tax is levied at a rate of 10.5% of the rental value of real estate assets situated within urban districts, and 6.5% of the rental value of real estate assets in peripheral zones of urban districts.

Employees have to contribute to the Caisse Nationale de Sécurité Sociale (CNSS) fund, as follows: social allocation 4.48%; mandatory medical care 2.26%.

Double Taxation Treaties

Withholding Taxes
Dividends: 13.755% (will progressively decrease to 10% by 2026); Interest: 20% (resident company)/30% (resident individual)/10% (non-resident - a loan granted for 10 years or more is exempt from withholding tax); Royalties: 0% (resident company or individual) 10% (non-resident company or individual).
The rates may vary according to specific tax treaties.

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Consumer Profile | Marketing opportunities

 

Consumer Profile

Consumer Profile
Morocco has a young population (median age of 30.2 years in 2022, Data Reportal) and large households (4.2 people on average in 2021, Ministry of Finance). 25.6% of the population is below 15 years old, 16.4% are between 15-24, 46.2% between 25 and 59, and 11.7% are 60 or older (Ministry of Finance, 2021). However, the population growth rates stands at only 0.91% in 2022 (CIA World Factbook).
In recent decades the urban population has increased substantially, reaching 64.6% of the total in 2022, with an annual urbanization rate estimated at 1.88% between 2020-2025 (CIA World Factbook). The territorial distribution of urbanization is particularly unequal, with one in three residents in two regions, Greater Casablanca and Rabat Salé Zemour Saer. Literacy among men aged 15 or more reached 83.3%, while that of their female counterparts is much lower, at 64.6% (CIA estimates). School is compulsory from 6 to 14 year olds and the number of out-of-school children has dropped sharply in recent years.
Most of the population is active in the services sector (45,8%), although the agricultural sector also has an important share - at 31.3% - followed by the industrial sector (22.9% - Ministry of Finance, 2020).
Purchasing Power
Morocco’s GDP per capita (PPP) was estimated at USD 8,143.5 in 2021 by the World Bank. According to the latest figures released by the National Security Fund (CNSS), the average salary of Moroccans in 2020 stood at MAD 5,152. Divided by sectors (CNSS, 2018), the average wages vary: civil servants average monthly wages sat at MAD 7,549. The highest paid workers were employed in the financial and insurance sectors (MAD 14,749), followed by the IT and communications sector (MAD 10,953). The lowest paid workers were employed in the agriculture (MAD 2,216 per month in 2020) and hospitality (MAD 3,963) sectors. The median salary stood at MAD 2,723 in 2018 (CNSS, latest data available).
It is estimated that three quarters of the total mass of consumption expenditure is made by the wealthiest half of the population, and five out of twelve regions contribute to three quarters of total consumption, i.e. Casablanca Settat, Rabat Salé Kenitra, Tangier Tetouan Al Hoceima, Fes Meknes and Marrakech Safi. The level of inequality in the distribution of wealth is indeed quite high in Morocco, with the highest Gini Index coefficient in North Africa according to a study by the OECD. This disparity is particularly significant at the gender level, the country ranking 136th out of 146 in the latest report of the World Economic Forum on gender parity. In 2020, Moroccan women earned about 15.5% less than men (CNSS, 2020).
Consumer Behaviour
For purchases the Moroccan consumer favours neighbourhood establishments where there is a relationship of trust built on contact with the seller. Some 55% of women are responsible for household purchases, 47% of whom seek information before buying and 54% choose brands over the price, according to an Ipsos study. In general, Moroccan consumers prefer to turn to local brands and products. According to a study by Sungeria Group and L’Economiste (2022), 60% of Moroccans prefer local products over foreign brands. But they are increasingly numerous, especially young people, in turning to foreign brands belonging to large multinationals. In addition, Moroccans are not particularly loyal to brands and this trend is continuing. Non-monetary offers such as loyalty programs providing priority services and product customisation are particularly popular, especially with millennials. Thus, only 55% of women surveyed responsible for household purchases say they are loyal to brands and 53% say they are on the lookout for the best offers and promotions.
E-commerce is still underdeveloped in Morocco, but online shopping has increased since the Covid-19 pandemic and the trend continues. During the first quarter 2022, online payment transactions increased by 34.3% compared to the same period in 2021, and the transaction values increased by 19.3% (CMI). While internet penetration has grown considerably over the past few years, now reaching approximately 84% of the total population in 2022 (Data Reportal), only 7% of internet users currently shop online. Only 4% of women responsible for household purchases say they have already done their shopping online and 20% say they look for information on the internet (they are 80% to rely on conventional media). Only a minority of Moroccan consumers use social networks, and among them, many do not want to have contact with a brand through this medium. However, the participation rate of Moroccan communities on brand fan pages is increasing. Thus, consumers who have chosen to follow one or more brands on social networks are investing more and more in their relationship with them, which tends to influence their purchasing decisions. Child-related spending is a top priority for 90% of parents, compared to 76% for travel, 75% for adult clothing and 59% leisure time, according to the Wafasalaf Observatory. Child participation in purchase decisions for food products is 71% and clothes 60% with 50% of kids valuing different brands of clothing.
In recent years we have seen a change in the eating habits of Moroccan consumers who are increasingly turning to healthy and organic products. This turning point concerns mainly young people and pregnant women. The country's major cities have seen many specialty stores flourish and some retailers have even expanded their networks from a dozen to some 700 outlets in 2-3 years.
Consumer Recourse to Credit

The use of household credit has been steadily increasing in recent years. According to the latest report by Bank Al Maghrib (Morocco’s central bank), household debt increased by 5.1% y-o-y in 2019, reaching MAD 358.6 billion. Of the total debt, around 63% is composed of home loans (+3.8% y-o-y), while 37% (+1% y-o-y) is destined to consumer credit.
Concerning home loans, the average credit in 2019 stood at around MAD 391,000, with 58% of the loans having a repayment term of 20 years or more. The beneficiaries of this type of credit were over 40 years in more than 60% of cases.
When it comes to consumer credit, more than over 75% of loans have a duration of more than 5 years. Bank Al Maghrib estimates the average amount at MAD 54,000 in 2019.  Over one-third (36%) of consumers recurring to credit had a monthly income below MAD 4,000, whereas 41% had monthly revenues above MAD 6,000. Out of all the people that recurred to consumer credit, 49% were employees, 34% civil servants, 7% retirees, 5% artisans and tradesmen and 5% freelancers.
In 2019, the risk credit for home loans reached 6.8%, from 6.5% one year before; and the consumer credit risk also increased from 10.3% to 10.7%.

Growing Sectors
Infrastructure, agriculture, agribusiness, construction, as well as sports and tourism represent promising sectors according to the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Morocco. Added to this is the still-young ICT sector, which represents one of the strategic axes of development put forward by the National Pact for Industrial Emergence.
Consumers Associations
Consumer Portal of Morroco
 

Population in Figures

Total Population:
37,457,971
Urban Population:
64.6%
Rural Population:
35.4%
Density of Population:
83 Inhab./km²
Men (in %)
49.2%
Women (in %)
49.7%
Natural increase:
1.02%
Medium Age:
25.0
Ethnic Origins:
According to the High Commission for Planning of the Kingdom of Morocco, 99.75% of the Moroccan population are Moroccan nationals, which means that only 0.25% are foreign nationals (mainly nationals of France, Senegal, Algeria, Syria, Spain, Ivory Coast, Libya, and Italy). A large majority of the population has Amazigh (Berber) and/or Arab origins, but other ethnicities are also present in Morocco.
 

Population of main cities

CityPopulation
Casablanca3,563,000
Fez1,187,000
Tangier1,087,000
Salé996,000
Marrakech971,000
Oujda572,000
Meknes571,000
Rabat533,000
Agadir498,000
Kenitra495,000

Source: Citypopulation.de, Latest available data.

 

Age of the Population

Life Expectancy in Years
Men:
71.9
Women:
76.4

Source: World Bank, Latest data available.

 
Distribution of the Population By Age Bracket in %
Under 5:
8.9%
6 to 14:
18.0%
16 to 24:
15.9%
25 to 69:
53.0%
Over 70:
4.2%
Over 80:
1.0%

Source: United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division, Latest data available.

 

Consumption Expenditure

Purchasing Power Parity202220232024 (e)2025 (e)2026 (e)
Purchasing Power Parity (Local Currency Unit per USD)3.663.753.783.803.80

Source: IMF – World Economic Outlook Database, Latest data available.

Definition: Purchasing Power Parity is the Number of Units of a Country's Currency Required to Buy the Same Amounts of Goods and Services in the Domestic Market as USD Would Buy in the United States.

Note: (e) Estimated Data

 
Household Final Consumption Expenditure202020212022
Household Final Consumption Expenditure
(Million USD, Constant Price 2000)
68,00873,57774,881
Household Final Consumption Expenditure
(Annual Growth, %)
-5.68.21.8
Household Final Consumption Expenditure per Capita
(USD, Constant Price 2000)
1,8261,9551,969

Source: World Bank, Latest data available.

 
 
Information Technology and Communication Equipment, per 100 Inhabitants%
Telephone Subscribers113.3
Main Telephone Lines10.1
Cellular mobile subscribers113.3
Internet Users55.0
PCs2.5

Source: International Telecommunication Union, Latest data available.

Marketing opportunities

 

Media in Which to Advertise

Television
The state ended its monopoly of TV broadcasting only in 2002 and many private channels have been operational since that date. Nonetheless, state-run Al Aoula and partly state-owned 2M continue to capture nearly half of audience (Ciaumed).
Television advertising continues to takes the lion's share, however its importance ahead of outdoor and digital advertising has been declining steadily. Once representing about half of the advertising market, TV advertising expenditure now accounts for 40% and recorded a deep decline in 2017 (-6.2%, USD 224 million). TV advertising could recover slightly in 2018 with Morocco competing in 2018 FIFA World Cup.


Main Televisions
National Radio broadcasting and Television Company of Morocco
2M
Medi 1 TV
Press
While the country boasts a wide variety of daily, weekly and monthly newspapers, the Press Code imposes significant restrictions on any coverage of affairs related to religion, the king and the territorial integrity of Morocco, and provides for prison terms. Newspaper readership has been on constant decline since 2013 as the top three dailies (Al Massae, Assabah and Alakhbar) have lost as much as 30% of their readership in four years (OJD Morocco - Organisme de Justification de la Diffusion). This decline is also reflected in the share of print advertising in total advertising expenditure. Press advertising accounts for 14% of total advertising expenditure and fell by 4% in 2017 (USD 80.6 million) despite the Moroccan advertising market growing steadily overall (Moroccan Group of Advertisers).

Main Newspapers
L' économiste
Aujourd'hui
Al Massae
As Sabah
Al Akhbar
Mail
Direct mail advertising needs to be carried out taking into consideration various contrasts of the Moroccan market (urban wealth and middle class and poorer rural communities where the adult literacy rate is significantly lower). More and more agencies offer direct mail advertising services. Moroccan Mail (Poste Maroc) provides three different mail advertising services for companies.
In Transportation Venues
Out-of-home (OOH) advertising is one of the most rapidly growing types of advertising in Morocco along with digital. Its market share is as high as 28% (this rate is thought to be even higher in reality as the Moroccan Group of Advertisers does not count tram unit and gas station advertising as outdoor advertising) and is among the most vibrant in its region. Outdoor advertising expenditure reached USD 179.6 million in 2017, recording the highest year-on-year increase (+19.3%). This form of advertising is expected to maintain its steady growth in 2018 with Morocco competing in 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Market Leaders:
FC COM
NMN
Radio
The state ended its monopoly of radio broadcasting only in 2002 and radio listenership figures have been on the rise since that date. Quran Radio (Radio Coran, state-owned) is the most popular station in the country (13.72% of listenership in the 4th quarter of 2017- Radiométrie Maroc), followed by the privately-owned Med Radio (12.30%). Radio penetration is among the highest in the region (54.5% of Moroccans listen to a radio station on a daily basis) and time spent listening to the radio stood at 2 hours 52 minutes (per day). Radio advertising accounted for 16% of total advertising expenditure (ahead of print) with USD 104.31 million in 2017 (8.6% year-on-year increase) (Moroccan Group of Advertisers).

Main Radios
Radio-Television Marocaine (RTM) (state-run)
Medi 1
Med Radio
Web
This market has exploded these last few years, more generally the online advertising market, owing to the rise of Internet in Morocco. Internet penetration rate rose by 30.1% in 2017 and reached 63.67%, third highest rate in Africa (National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency- 2018). The number of mobile Internet users grew by 31.69% in 2017 and stood at 20.83 million. Digital advertising expenditure, while considerably smaller than traditional forms of advertising, continues to grow considerably. It rose by 60% and reached USD 54.1 million in 2017 (Moroccan Group of Advertisers).

Market Leaders:
WikiDigital
Webeuz
Main Advertising Agencies
Engagia
Taktil Communication
Alter Way Group
 

Main Principles of Advertising Regulations

Beverages/Alcohol
Article 64 of the Press Code strictly forbids all forms of alcohol advertising (including sponsorship).
Cigarettes
Article 64 of the Press Code strictly forbids all forms of tobacco advertising in the media. Law No. 15-91 further forbids sponsorship and point-of-sale advertising of tobacco products.
Pharmaceuticals/Drugs
Law No. 17-04 regulates pharmaceutical advertising in Morocco. As such, only medicinal products that are issued with a marketing license can be advertised and their advertisement is subject to a prior approval by the Ministry of Health. Ministry's approval is only valid for a year and can be renewed as long as the product holds a valid marketing license. Advertising of prescription drugs is not allowed.
Other Rules
Law No. 03-77 on Audiovisual Communication sets forth guidelines for advertising companies and as such advertisements cannot be inconsistent with religious values, public order, public morals and national defence purposes.
Use of Foreign Languages in Advertisement
No specific regulation on the use of language in advertising. Advertising in French is common owing to the country's past relationship with the language while TV spots in Moroccan Arabic (Darija) are increasingly popular (especially during prime time). Advertising in Berber languages (Amazigh) is less common despite its official language status.
Organizations Regulating Advertising
High Authority of Audiovisual Communication

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Market Access Procedures | Distributing a Product

 

Market Access Procedures

 
 

Customs Procedures

Import Procedures
For free imports, the importer must sign a commitment for imports on form "Commitment for Import, Import license, Preliminary Import Declaration" (in French).
The Commitment to Import must be drawn up in 5 specimens and accompanied by a Pro-forma invoice in 5 copies specifying:
  • the unit price expressed in ex-works value, FOB, FAS;
  • quantity expressed in units of appropriate measures;
  • trade description of the goods.

The Commitment to Import must be filed with an authorised bank chosen by the importer for domiciliation. After domiciliation, the bank gives the importer their own copy along with two extra copies, in a sealed envelop for the customs office. The Commitment to Import is valid for 6 months as from the date of its domiciliation and facilitates customs clearance and the financial settlement of the goods.

An application for exemption from customs duties is necessary for free imports allowed as duty-free within the framework of the tariff and commercial Agreements and Accords concluded between Morocco and certain countries, products belonging to tariff quotas set forth by the Association and Free trade Agreements concluded between Morocco and the European Community and Morocco and the States of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), and products belonging to tariff quotas envisaged by the Multilateral Agreements.

Application for exemption from customs duties is to be made in 4 copies on a form called "Customs Exemption Application" and accompanied by a pro forma invoice in 3 copies, specifying:

  • the unit price expressed in ex-works value, FOB, FAS;
  • quantity expressed in units of appropriate measures;
  • trade description of the goods.

Application for exemption from customs duties is lodged with the Ministry of Foreign Trade; it is delivered by this department after consultation with the ministry concerned. The decision to grant or refuse exemption from customs duties is notified to the concerned party by the Ministry of Foreign Trade. Exemption from customs duties is valid for a maximum of 6 months as from the date of the stamp of the Ministry for Foreign Trade.

Import of goods is further subject to the invoice, the import title and, if necessary other documents required according to the nature of the products, on presentation at the customs office within 60 days as from the deposit of the summary declaration, a detailed declaration on a form called "Single Declaration of Goods" (DUM).

In the case of imports, you can make an advance payment up to 40% of the transaction. The advance payment is authorized for certain products to the limit of the value of DH 200,000 (see Circular 1718 of 1st August, 2007). For more information on the framework of the exchange transactions regulation, please consult the website of the Moroccan Foreign Exchange Office(in French only).

For more information on customs clearance procedure, please visit the website of Moroccan Customs.

Specific Import Procedures
For goods subject to import license, the importer must submit the license application form in 6 copies, against receipt, with the Ministry of Industry, Investment, Trade and Digital Economy. The license is issued delivered by the ministry, after consultation with other concerned ministries. The import license is valid for 6 months to the maximum.
Certain goods are also subject to a preliminary import declaration: those that are likely to cause a serious damage to local production. These include cases of massive imports, imports of products subsidised in the exporting country or products imported at dumped prices. The importer must submit 6 copies of the preliminary import declaration application with the Ministry of Industry, Investment, Trade and Digital Economy. The Ministry of Foreign Trade assesses the application within 10 days. The preliminary import declaration is valid for a period of 9 months and renewable once.
Importing Samples
Samples can enter without custom duties, subject to a deposit, if they are re-exported. The limit for temporary entry is six months, renewable for up to two years.
Morocco is a signatory of the ATA carnet agreement.
 
 
 

Customs Duties and Taxes on Imports

Customs threshold (from which tariffs are required)
No customs threshold applies.
Average Customs Duty (Excluding Agricultural Products)
According to data by the World Bank, the simple average tariff across all products is 4.34%.
Products Having a Higher Customs Tariff
According to data by the World Bank, the maximum rate of tariff on any product is 200%. However, import duties generally vary from 2.5% to 40%.
Preferential Rates
Morocco has signed several bilateral and multilateral trade agreements, including those with the EU, the USA, the EFTA, the Arab Free Trade Zone, Turkey, etc.
Customs Classification
Morocco applies the Harmonised Customs System
Method of Calculation of Duties
Ad valorem on the CIF value of the goods.
Method of Payment of Customs Duties
Import commitments must be domiciled with a bank.
Recently, the Moroccan customs have set up a system of online secure payment.
Import Taxes (Excluding Consumer Taxes)
A para-fiscal tax of 25% on imports applies to finance activities, such as technical inspections for export goods, economic and export promotion, industrial development, and small-scale production.
Under Moroccan tax law, the importation operations are subject to VAT at the rate of 20%, plus a special tax on importation called Taxe Parafiscale à l’Importation (TPI), with a rate of 0.25%.Excise taxes apply to specific products, such as tobacco, alcohol, and lubricants.
 
 

Labeling and Packaging Rules

Packaging
The Moroccan Institute of Packaging and Conditioning (IMEC) is competent as regards standards of packaging and conditioning. The Ministries of Agriculture and Health control farm products and products meant for human consumption.
Languages Permitted on Packaging and Labeling
French and/or Arabic
Unit of Measurement
Metric system
Mark of Origin "Made In"
Obligatory
Labeling Requirements
Name of the product, name and address of the manufacturer, country of origin, weight
Specific Regulations
For foodstuffs, date of manufacture and expiry date of consumption.
For drugs, additionally composition should be mentioned.

Distributing a Product

 

Distribution Network

Types of Outlet

Family run small shops
Mainly food products
Local supermarkets

Acima, Label'Vie
Hypermarkets
Diversified
Aswak Assalam, Marjane
Specific retail stores
Furniture, household electrical appliances, do-it-yourself, clothes
Mr. Bricolage
Kitea
Tangerois
Zara
 

Evolution of the Retail Sector

Growth and Regulation
The food retail sector has been growing in recent years, and in 2021 it represented 14% of the country’s GDP (USDA, latest data available). Although traditional channels still account for 80% of grocery retailing, large-scale distribution is expected to account for about 30% of national consumption by 2025 (Ministry of Industry estimates). Several factors are influencing the changing retail sector in Morocco: a high rate of population growth and rapid urbanisation, combined with the rise of disposable income.

The retail distribution of food in Morocco varies across income levels. Superstores generally cater to more affluent consumers. Traditional neighbourhood stores cater to the lower income population who tend to buy fewer items on a frequent basis. Weekly rural farmers' markets cater to rural populations. Higher income earners tend to buy more processed and packaged foods on a frequent basis (especially in high-income areas like Casablanca, Rabat, Tangiers, and Marrakech). Large supermarkets are currently in all major Moroccan cities (including Agadir, Tangiers, Fes, Meknes, Tetouan, and Mohamedia) and are increasingly being opened in even middle size cities (such as Beni Mellal, Khouribga and Oujda) as well as in lower-income areas of major cities, thus providing alternatives to traditional buying habits. Moroccans are gradually shifting towards modern retail channels and embracing technology, with independent small grocers growing at a slow rate compared to their previous performance.
Marjane Holding and Label’Vie (Carrefour, Carrefour Market, and Atacadao) are Morocco’s leading modern food retailers with other notables including Ynna (Aswak Salam) and BIM. About half of supermarkets’ sales take place in Casablanca and Rabat.

Internet retailing packaged food sales are expected to continue increasing, as consumers are always looking for more convenience. The demand for convenience, health and wellness, will be among the main consumer trends that are likely to impact retailing in the years to come in groceries.

Market share
According to the latest figures from USDA, Marjane remained the leading supermarket in Morocco in value terms in 2021. In general, the main brands are:

- Marjane Holding (including Acima): with 38 hypermarkets and 52 supermarkets and an estimated market share of 57% in 2021
- Label’Vie group: owns the brands Atacadao (12 hypermarkets) and Carrefour (12 hypermarkets and 70 supermarkets), with a combined turnover of around USD 538 million
- BIM, a discount store with a wide presence in the country, had a turnover of around USD 50-100 million
- Aswak Assalam: with 14 outlets and a turnover of around USD 150-200 million

Furthermore, the French retailer group Système U entered the Moroccan landscape in 2019 and currently holds 2 supermarkets.
Concerning traditional grocery stores, government figures estimate their number at around 45,000. They are generally managed by one person and have a limited size.
Retail Sector Organisations
Ministry of Commerce and Industry
Trade and Services Federation
 

E-commerce

Internet access
Morocco, with its 36.2 million inhabitants, is a mid-sized country by African standards and has the sixth highest internet penetration rate across the continent. Internet penetration rate rose to 62.4% (63.67% according to Moroccan National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency) at the end of 2017 with 22.6 million Internet users (Internet World Stats). As such, despite accounting for 2.8% of Africa's total population, Morocco has nearly 5% of all Internet users in Africa. Over 90% of Internet users access via mobile (20.83 million) and their number rose by 31.69% in 2017. Morocco had 1.32 million fixed Internet users (ADSL) at the end of 2017, as opposed to 1.23 million in 2016. Fibre Optic Internet has only 36,347 subscribers (10,657 in 2016). 6.8 million users had 4G Wireless Internet access at the end of 2017 (2.8 million at the end of 2016, +143% y-o-y). The number of smartphones rose to 18.06 million at the end of 2016 (3.36 million higher than 2015) (National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency). As far as search engines are concerned, Google dominates the industry with a 96.31% market share, followed by Yahoo at 2.7%.
E-commerce market
The Moroccan e-commerce market is booming and is among the most vibrant in Africa. Morocco is ranked 6th among African states (after Mauritius, South Africa, Tunisia, Nigeria and Kenya) and 85th worldwide on UNCTAD's B2C E-commerce Index list. Retail websites affiliated with the Moroccan Electronic Interbanking Centre registered US$ 211 million income in the first nine months of 2017, an increase of 51.4% from the previous year. The Pan-African Jumia, which is the top online retailer in many African countries, is also in a leading position in Morocco, with more than five million visitors per month and 230,000 daily visits on average. Morocco-based Hmizate is also a key player in the market and has launched many special sales events (Black Friday, Mobile Week, Ramadan special) to compete against international retailers. As far as specialist websites are concerned, Inwi leads the electronics sector whereas Citymall and Lavieclaire dominate beauty and food markets respectively. Richbond and Azurahome generate nearly two-thirds of sales in housing and decoration. Decathlon and Vetement lead online fashion sales (more than 40% of specialised sales). Cross-border trade is less popular than in European countries owing to a general lack of secure online payment methods. Nonetheless, AliExpress has launched a local version of its website, and Amazon France along with several other intermediary companies deliver Amazon orders to Morocco. The lack of online payment systems has always been an obstacle for the development of Moroccan e-commerce. However, online payments and credit cards recorded strong growth in 2017 and 2018. According to the Moroccan Electronic Interbanking Centre, internet payment activity was characterised by strong growth during the first half of 2018, with the number of online payments increasing 32%. Additionally, internet payment systems such as PayPal are beginning to enter the market and are also gaining popularity in the country. Finally, the Moroccan Government is working on the implementation of policies and strategies that aim to accelerate the digital transformation of the country. The main goals of the '2020 Morocco Digital Plan' are to make Morocco a regional digital hub through the strengthening of digital export offers and the bridging of the digital divide and the transformation of the most important sectors of the national economy.
Social media
Moroccan Internet users are increasingly active on social media and spend on average 2 hours and 24 minutes per day on these platforms, and 2 hours and 53 minutes online in general, according to Hootsuite. The number of social media users is estimated at 16 million - 44% of total population - which represents a 12% y-o-y increase from 2017. Nearly all of them - 15 million users - also access their accounts via mobile, denoting a 15% y-o-y increase during the same period. According to the National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency, 77% of social media users check their accounts on a daily basis, a rate that increases to 80% in cities, and decreases to 68% in rural areas. Facebook is by far the most popular social media network with nearly 16 million accounts, out of which 13.2 million belong to users under 34 years old (8.2 million males under 34 and 5 million females). Additionally, of the total number of accounts, 36% belong to female users and 64% to males. WhatsApp users are slightly more active than those on Facebook. Instagram has 3.5 million users in Morocco, accounting for nearly 10% of the total population, and is more popular among men, with 43% of accounts belonging to female users and 57% to males. Twitter and LinkedIn are among the least popular networks with only 8% and 3% of Internet users being active on these platforms respectively. As of August 2018, the leading social media platforms by market share in the country were YouTube (50.19%), Facebook (43.4%), Twitter (2.74%), Pinterest (2.74%), Instagram (0.36%) and Google+ (0.18%).
 

Direct Selling

Evolution of the Sector
The World Federation of Direct Selling Associations (WFDSA) 2017 report shows retail direct selling in Morocco grew 3%, was valued at USD 119 million, and involved 292,597 independent representatives.

Euromonitor International expects the Moroccan direct selling industry to continue growing due to the entry of small direct sellers, increased Internet use, and brand representatives in every city or town as well as young consumers interested in beauty products and trends. Oriflame remained the largest direct selling company in 2017. Avon Beauty Products and Forever Living have adopted a different sales strategy, option to collaborate with beauty bloggers and Youtube influencers when introducing new products. Independent online retailers such as American Shop by Hanan, Accesories shop, and UniqueShop have growing influence on social media and offer international cosmetics not available in Moroccan direct selling channels
 
 

Commercial Intermediaries

Trading Companies
 
  • Type of Organization
Generally import-export companies specialized in a product range.
Occasionally, they have distribution activities.
  • Main Actors
Macro Market
Casma
Wholesalers
 
  • Type of Organization
The sector is very spread out.
Wholesalers are generally small companies specialized in a type of product. They are generally local food-processing or craft industry (co-operatives) products.
Wholesalers are found in the industrial sector, and are generally related to the producing conglomerate (ONA, etc).
For many kind of goods distribution’s network, it is relatively easy to identify the major players.
  • Main Actors
Metro Cash & Carry
Useful Resources
Morocco directory
 

Using a Commercial Agent

The Advantages
Having a sales representative facilitates penetrating the market rapidly (he is already well established) and less expensive (no fixed charges).
Where to Be Vigilant
Loss of autonomy in commercial management and marketing.
The company is completely dependent on the motivation and competence on the agent.
Elements of Motivation
Exclusive rights, a fixed term contract, a minimal sale objective.
Besides, follow-up and in particular field visits are very important.
The Average Amount of Commission
From 5 to 10% of sales or 50% of the gross margin. Variable according to the sectors.
Breach of Contract
A written contract is highly recommended.
The duration of the collaboration, the amount of remuneration must be fixed and a non-competition clause must be specified at least during the collaboration.
Finding a Commercial Agent
Agent & Co
Laniac, in French
 

Setting Up a Commercial Unit

The Advantages
Facilitates having an observation and research base, entering into commercial contacts and advertising its company.
Where to Be Vigilant
Relatively expensive. If one does not know the market, it would be better to be introduced.
Different Possible Forms of Settlement
 
  • A Representative Office
A representative office may be necessary to obtain market or any other data and provide promotional support. However, a contact office not being able to involve in commercial transactions or income generation, cannot directly manage orders and print invoices.
  • A Branch Office
A branch or a subsidiary company can take and run orders and run a marketing or advertizing program, recruit sales forces and carry out promotional activities.
The branch does not have legal entity, the procedures of creation are thus simple and short. On the other hand, the parent company is responsible for all debts and obligations of the branch.
  • A Company
It offers a commercial credibility to your prospectives and  suppliers, a better guarantee of protection of the registered brand, of obtaining credit and market penetration.
 

Franchising

Evolution of the Sector

The franchise sector is in full rise in Morocco and occupies an increasingly important place within the commercial landscape, in line with the evolution of consumers’ behaviour in Morocco, aspiring to quality products and a modern and pleasant purchasing environment. Such trends have played a structuring role in the development of commercial real estate and has accompanied the emergence of a significant supply of shopping centres in several Moroccan cities (including the Morocco Mall in Casablanca, which is North Africa’s largest). Data from the Moroccan Association of Franchises shows that there are currently 500 franchising firms active in the country, with more than 2,000 points of sale and more than 600,000 people employed. US firms play an important role, with over four hundred American franchises operating in the fast food, clothing, office supply, furniture, cosmetics, office cleaning, and auto repair sectors. French firms are also important for the sector (around 40% of total franchises according to Business France). The distribution of sales points shows a strong concentration in the metropolitan area of Rabat-Casablanca due to its high population density and purchasing power.
The 2019 International Franchise Attractiveness Index ranked Morocco 39 with a significant score of 54. With a list of 131 states, the index listed Morocco as the first attractive business hub in Africa and the 2nd in MENA after the UAE.
According to a recent survey carried out by the Moroccan Association of Franchises, the sector has been strongly impacted by the Covid-19 health crisis. The drop in activity is estimated at nearly 90% of turnover.

Some Big Franchises
Pigier, educational programs
For Further Information
Ministry of Industry, Commerce and New Technologies (in French), Department of Commerce and distribution
 

Finding Assistance

Export Trading Companies
Moroccan Association of Exporters
Directory of Moroccan importers
Cassma
Recommended Resource
 
 
 
 

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Customs Procedures | Industrial and Manufacturing Profile |Identifying a Supplier | Controlling the Quality of the Products | Organizing Goods Transport To and From Morocco

 

Customs Procedures

Export Clearance
In order to obtain an export title, the following documents must be presented to the customs office:

- export declaration (DUM);
- committment exchange;
- invoice;
- certificate of origin;
- packing list;
- certificates of inspection.

For further information, consult the dedicated section on the portal of the Moroccan Customs.

Necessary Declaration
The export certificate must be accompanied by the final invoice, the commercial contract and other commercial documents (certificate of origin, details, etc.), shipping (transport contract) and insurance documents (where applicable).
Restrictions
Certain goods cannot be exported, including: weapons and ammunition, objects of art and antiquity, furniture which are of historical, archaeological or anthropological interest to Morocco or which are of interest to the humanities in general, illicit drugs, etc.
For the full list of the products for which an export license is required, click here.
Export Taxes
None

Industrial and Manufacturing Profile

The industrial sector constitutes 26% of Morocco's GDP in 2019 (World Bank).

Type of Manufacturers

Original Equipment Manufacturers
Low compared to subcontracting due to weakness of the domestic market.
Original Design Manufacturers
Low compared to subcontracting due to weakness of the domestic market.
Subcontractors
Subcontractors are numerous in Morocco: 1850 companies already in 2002.
Historically, they are more concentrated in the textile-clothing sector. But today, Moroccan companies are moving into production of electronics components or spare parts for cars and aeronautics.
Useful Resources
Ministry of Commerce and Industry

Identifying a Supplier

Moroccan multisector Business directories

2FindLocal Morocco - Moroccan business directory

Afrikta - Morocco business directory

Arabo Morocco - Business directory for Morocco

Biz Pages Morocco - Business directory for Morocco

BizExposed Morocco - Business directory for Morocco

Bloombiz Morocco - Business directory for Morocco

City By App Morocco - Business directory for Morocco

Cybo Morocco - Business directory for Morocco

eArabic Market - Morocco business directory

eArabic Market Morocco - Business directory for Morocco

 

Moroccan Marketplaces

Sample of marketplaces incorporated in Morocco (A to Z)

 

Upcoming Trade shows in Morocco

June 5th, 2024
June 5th, 2024
September 6th, 2024
September 12th, 2024
October 1st, 2024
October 1st, 2024
October 1st, 2024

Finding Assistance

Recommended Resource

Controlling the Quality of the Products

Quality Control Organizations
Moroccan Industrial Standardisation Department

Organizing Goods Transport To and From Morocco

Main Useful Means of Transport
Over the last two decades Morocco spent an average of about MAD 40 billion on transport and logistics, upgrading consistently its network.
Roadways dominate inland transport in Morocco, providing 90% of the mobility of the people and 85% of flows of goods except phosphate. As of January 2020 Morocco’s road network consists of more than 57,330 km of road, of which around 43,500 is paved.
Morocco’s railway network includes 1300 km of track, with 120 stations serving passengers as well as freight.
Bestowed with a 3,500 km long coastline distributed on the Atlantic ocean and the Mediterranean sea, 95% of Morocco’s external trade is carried on through maritime transport. According to the latest figures from the Ministry of Transport, during the first eleven months of 2018, 122.8 million tonnes of goods transited through Moroccan ports. The Moroccan freight transport fleet is made up of 8 vessels active belonging to 7 shipping companies.
 
 

By Sea

Ports
Website of Moroccan ports
Transport Professionals
OCP Group
Comarit
CMA-CGM

By Rail

Transport Professionals
National Office of Railways

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Legal Forms of Companies | The Active Population in Figures | Working Conditions | The Cost of Labour | Management of Human Resources

 

Legal Forms of Companies

Société à Responsabilité Limitée S.A.R.L. (private limited company)
Number of partners: 1 minimum and 50 maximum
Capital (max/min): MAD 10,000
Shareholders and liability: Liability is limited to the amount of contributions.
Société anonyme, S.A. (public limited company)
Number of partners: 5 minimum with no maximum
Capital (max/min): MAD 3,000,000 to open a listed public limited companies and MAD 300,000 for a Public Liability company.
Shareholders and liability: Liability is limited to the amount of contributions.
Société en nom collectif, SNC (Partnership)
Number of partners: 2 partners at the minimum
Capital (max/min): No minimum capital required.
Shareholders and liability: Liability is unlimited.
Société en Commandite Simple, SCS (Limited Partnership)
Number of partners: 2 partners at the minimum
Capital (max/min): No minimum capital required.
Shareholders and liability: Liability of the active partners is unlimited and limited to the amount of contributions for the silent partners.
Société en Commandite par Actions, SCA (Partnership limited by shares)
Number of partners: 3 sleeping partners and one active partner.
Capital (max/min): no minimum capital.
Shareholders and liability: Liability of the active partners is unlimited and limited to the amount of contributions for the silent partners.
 

Business Setup Procedures

Setting Up a CompanyMorocco
Procedures (number)4.00
Time (days)9.00

Source: The World Bank - Doing Business, Latest data available.

 
The Competent Organisation
The Regional Investment Center of Casablanca.
For Further Information
Doing Business website, Procedures to start a business in Morocco.
Export.gov, A commercial guide to assist companies wishing to export to Morocco.
 

Financial Information Directories

Dun & Bradstreet - Worldwide directory with financial information on businesses

Kerix.net - Business directory in Morocco

Kompass - Moroccan business directory

 

Recovery Procedures

Principle
The court appoints a receiver and controllers. The receiver contributes to managing the business. He draws up an economic, accounting and company balance sheet and offers a recovery package by considering possible offers. He meets the creditors to make offers to them.
The court then decides either on a plan of continuation, or a plan of transfer, or a compulsory liquidation.
Minimum Debt-to-Capital Ratio Triggering Liquidation
None
Bankruptcy Laws
Book V of the the Commercial law of 1996, inspired from the French legislation.
Reorganization and Rehabilitation Laws
Book V of the Commercial law of 1996, inspired from the French legislation.

The Active Population in Figures

201820192020
Labour Force11,914,87112,084,53011,523,035

Source: International Labour Organization - ILOSTAT, Latest data available.

 
201720182019
Total activity rate48.57%48.65%48.73%
Men activity rate74.84%74.86%74.90%
Women activity rate23.14%23.26%23.37%

Source: International Labour Organization - ILOSTAT, Latest data available.

 
For Further Statistics
High Commissioner for Planning
L'Economiste
For Further Information About the Labour Market
World Bank

Working Conditions

Opening Hours
 
  • Legal Weekly Duration
44 hours per week for non-agricultural sector.
48 hours per week for agricultural sector.
  • Maximum Duration
Not more than 10h per day except for waiver
  • Night Hours
From 21h to 6h
Working Rest Day
Sundays generally
Paid Annual Vacation
One and a half day per month of effective work, increased with seniority
Retirement Age
60 years generally and 55 years for miners.
Child Labour and Minimum Age For Employment
Forbidden for less than 15 years
Informal Labour Market
The informal sector is important in Morocco. According to the last survey in 2004, it represents 39% of the non-agricultural employment.

The Cost of Labour

Pay

Minimum Wage
Morocco's minimum wage is MAD 3,300 per month in the public sector, MAD 2,828.71 per month in the private sector, and MAD 76,70 MAD per day for agricultural workers, according to the Moroccan government data.
Average Wage
The average salary of Moroccans in 2021 stood at around MAD 1,793. In the public sector, the average salary was MAD 8,237.
Other Forms of Pay
  • Pay For Overtime
Increase by 25%
  • Pay For Rest Days Worked
+25% during the day and 50% during the night
  • Pay For Night Hours
No increase
  • Pay For Overtime at Night
Increase by 50%
 

Social Security Costs

The Areas Covered
Health insurance, unemployment, family and maternity benefits, and pension
Contributions
Contributions Paid By the Employer: Family allocation: 6.40%
Social allocation: 8.98% (with a computation base capped at MAD 6,000)
Professional tax: 1.60%
Mandatory medical care: 4.11%.
Contributions Paid By the Employee: Social allocation: 4.48% (with a computation base capped at MAD 6,000)
Mandatory medical care: 2.26%

Management of Human Resources

 

Recruitment

Method of Recruitment
Majority of recruitments in Morocco are done by co-option or network. The word of the mouth is thus essential.
Advertisements in the newspapers are always reliable, while those on the Internet are developing rapidly.
Recruitment Agencies
There are many recruitment firms, most of them being French-speaking.
On the other hand, one does not fine large international firms.
Link to a directory of recruitment firms.
Recruitment Websites
ReKrute
Employment exchange
Career option
Bayt.com: Source for Jobs in the Middle East
 

The Contract

Type of Contract
Employment regulations have been adopted in July 2003 and are in force since June 2004. Employment contract is governed by legal provisions and to a lesser extent by collective agreements and individual negotiations.
The employment contract form is rather rigid. Three types of contracts coexist: the permanent contract, the fixed term contract and the contract to complete a given work.

Breach of Contracts

  • Retirement
Possible
  • Dismissals
The new type justifies only dismissal for serious error or plurality of disciplinary actions.
In all the other cases, dismissal will be regarded as incorrect and will require payment of compensation of prior notice of dismissal.
  • Other Possible Methods
Employee's approval expressed by a signed and certified resignation letter.
Agreement between the employee and the employer (meant for the factory inspector) cancelling the contract
Expiry of the contract or completion of work aimed at in the contract for a fixed term contract (involves damages).
Labour Laws
Employment regulations of 2004 (in french)
Consult Doing Business Website, to obtain a summary of the labor regulations that apply to local entreprises.
 

Dispute Settlement

 

Conciliation Process

Cases of Dispute
Incorrect dismissals, delay in the payment of salaries, non-respect of the work legislation
  • Legal Framework
Employment regulations of 2004 (in French)
  • Procedure
The first attempt at conciliation is done with the factory inspector.
If this fails, the governor of the province creates a provincial commission of investigation and conciliation and later on a National Commission in case the previous commissions do not succeed.
 

Judicial Structures

  • Legal Framework
Individual conflicts are settled in accordance with the legislation in force.
Employment regulations aims for conciliation of collective conflicts, in the event of failure, it takes recourse to arbitration. The verdict may further lead to an appeal before the Supreme court.
  • Competent Legal Body
Inspection of Work
Delegation of Work to the Prefecture
 

Social Partners

Employer Associations
CGEM - General Confederation of Companies of Morocco
Social Dialogue and Involvement of Social Partners
Historically unions had important influence but it has reduced. Article 29 of the Constitution gives workers the right to strike, but no detailed law defines it. Although unions claim high membership rates, Morocco has about 600,000 unionized workers, less than 6% of the 11.26 million-strong workforce. Three federations stand out among the 17 existing trade unions: Moroccan Union of Work (UMT), the Democratic Confederation of Work (CDT), and General union of the Workers of Morocco (UGTM).
Their negotiation powers are overall weak because of the rupture and a rather cloudy management, but they are rooted in the company.
Unionisation Rate
6% (official figures)
Labour Unions
Unions in Morocco
General Union of the workers of Morocco (In arabic)
 
 

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: FDI in Figures | What to consider if you invest in Morocco | Protection of Foreign Investment | Procedures Relative to Foreign Investment | Office Real Estate and Land Ownership | Investment Aid | Investment Opportunities | Sectors Where Investment Opportunities Are Fewer | Finding Assistance For Further Information

 

FDI in Figures

According to UNCTAD's World Investment Report 2023, FDI flows to Morocco saw a marginal decline of 6% in 2022, totalling USD 2.1 billion. However, announced greenfield investments in the country quadrupled to USD 15 billion, driven in part by Total Eren (Luxembourg), which intends to construct a hydrogen and green ammonia production facility in Morocco with an investment exceeding USD 10 billion. In the same year, the total stock of FDI stood at USD 63.2 billion. The main investing countries in terms of stock are France (30.8%), the UAE (20.3%), Spain (8%), Switzerland (5.7%), and the U.S. (5%); whereas the sectors receiving the most FDI are industry (almost one-fourth), real estate (20%), communication (12.4%), tourism (9.5%), energy and mining (6.4%), and banking (5.7% - data Foreign Exchange Office). In 2022, Morocco has attracted nearly USD 34 billion in greenfield FDI projects, double the previous record set in 2008. Chinese companies, especially in the electric vehicle supply chain, have significantly contributed to this surge. Notable projects include Gotion High-Tech's agreement with the Moroccan government for its first African gigafactory and Huayou Cobalt's plan to invest USD 19.5 billion in an electric vehicle battery components factory. The country has also secured major FDI ventures in renewable energy, chemicals, and tourism. According to the latest figures from the Moroccan Foreign Exchange Office, in the first half of 2023, Morocco recorded a net inflow of foreign direct investments of MAD 16.3 billion, down by 57.2% from the same period one year earlier.

After the positive results of the Industrial Acceleration Plan 2014-2020, a vast project of economic modernisation to attract more FDI, the government launched a second phase for 2021-2025 focused mainly on the consolidation of the achievements made within the framework of the first phase of the plan (which, among other results, created 54 industrial systems in partnership with 32 professional associations and universities in various sectors) and their generalization to all regions, by integrating small and medium enterprises and by placing industry at the heart of technological transformations. Among the reasons to invest in Morocco, there are the relatively low cost of labour, its strategic location between Europe and sub-Saharan Africa, good infrastructures, and the stability of the country’s currency and political framework. On the other hand, Morocco still has significant social and regional disparities, weak productivity and low competitiveness and an economy heavily reliant on the price of hydrocarbons and the agricultural sector. Morocco ranks 70th among 132 economies on the Global Innovation Index 2023, 101st out of 184 on the 2023 Index of Economic Freedom, and 94th out of 180 on the Corruption Perception Index.

 
Foreign Direct Investment202020212022
FDI Inward Flow (million USD)1,4192,2662,141
FDI Stock (million USD)71,97572,99463,278
Number of Greenfield Investments*625271
Value of Greenfield Investments (million USD)2,6593,77515,328

Source: UNCTAD, Latest data available.

Note: * Greenfield Investments are a form of Foreign Direct Investment where a parent company starts a new venture in a foreign country by constructing new operational facilities from the ground up.

 

FDI STOCKS BY COUNTRY AND INDUSTRY

Main Investing Countries2020, in %
France36.0
Spain8.5
United Arab Emirates5.6
United Kingdom5.5
Luxembourg4.9
Qatar4.9
South Africa4.7
Main Invested Sectors2020, in %
Agriculture31.6
Financial and insurance activities26.4
Mining and quarrying14.1
Information and communication7.0
Wholesale and retail trade6.0
Manufacturing4.3

Source: Foreign Exchange Office of the Ministry of Finance, Latest data available.

 
Form of Company Preferred By Foreign Investors
S.A(public ltd. company), S.A.R.L (private ltd. company
Form of Establishment Preferred By Foreign Investors
Subsidiary
Main Foreign Companies
Telefonica, the Spanish telecommunications giant shows its presence through the Méditel mobile operator and call centers Atento. Dell completed its largest center of Europe-Africa-Middle East area.
France has nearly 500 subsidiary companies in Morocco which employ on the whole more than 65,000 people. Among the principal subsidiary companies of foreign companies based in Morocco, one can quote Total, Renault, Holcim but also STMicroelectronics, Sanofi and Nestlé.
More "success stories" can be consulted on the website of Invest in Morocco.
Sources of Statistics
Foreign exchange office (Office des Changes)

What to consider if you invest in Morocco

Strong Points

Morocco's strengths for FDI are:

  • A legal framework and assistance measures very favourable to investors
  • Relatively low labour cost
  • A strategic location, between Europe and sub-Saharan Africa 
  • Robust infrastructure
  • A young and relatively well-trained population
  • Political stability encouraged by the popularity of the King, Mohammed VI
Weak Points

The main obstacles to the development of FDI in Morocco are:

  • A relatively small internal market
  • A country still highly dependent on agriculture and therefore vulnerable to natural disasters and the price of hydrocarbons
  • Administrative burdens slowing down, among other things, the start of business activities
  • Significant social disparities by region (rural vs. urban) and a high poverty rate
  • High unemployment rate and low productivity
  • Weak intellectual property rights protection
  • A lack of transparency in public procurement
Government Measures to Motivate or Restrict FDI

The Moroccan government actively encourages foreign investments. The "Investment Charter" of 1995 is the main legal source for FDIs. This charter mainly provides company exemptions for VAT and for corporate tax for 5 years under certain conditions.
In the industrial sector, the Industrial Acceleration Plan 2014-2020 aimed at establishing “ecosystems” that integrate value chains and supplier relationships between large companies and SMEs; and the government announced a new Acceleration Plan for the period 2021-2025.
Morocco has implemented reforms to reduce company registration fees, eliminate minimum capital requirements for limited liability companies and facilitate business registration. Companies in the “Industrial Acceleration Zones” enjoy a 15% corporate tax rate following an initial five years of exemption, whereas companies in the Casablanca Finance City (CFC) are tax exempt for the first five years, then are subject to tax at a 15% rate both on their local and export activities.
The Moroccan government can sign specific agreements and contracts with investors, providing subsidies for certain expenses, custom duty and VAT exemptions when the agreed criteria are met.
Each of the 12 regions into which the country is divided has the authority to develop its own investment promotion campaigns.

Protection of Foreign Investment

Bilateral Investment Conventions Signed By Morocco
To see the list of investment treaties signed by Morocco, consult UNCTAD's International Investment Agreements Navigator.
International Controversies Registered By UNCTAD
Refer to UNCTAD's Investment Dispute Settlement Navigator.
Organizations Offering Their Assistance in Case of Disagreement
ICSID, International Center for settlement of Investment Disputes
ICCWBO, International Court of Arbitration, International Chamber of Commerce
Member of the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency
Morocco is a signatory of the MIGA convention.
 
Country Comparison For the Protection of InvestorsMorocco
Index of Transaction Transparency*9.0
Index of Manager’s Responsibility**2.0
Index of Shareholders’ Power***7.0

Source: The World Bank - Doing Business, Latest data available.

Procedures Relative to Foreign Investment

Freedom of Establishment
Foreigners can generally invest in the country enjoying the same conditions as locals (a few exemptions apply for specific sectors).
Acquisition of Holdings
Foreign investments in air and maritime transport companies and maritime fisheries are capped at 49%. Foreigners cannot own agricultural land, though they can lease it for up to 99 years. In the oil and gas sector, the National Agency for Hydrocarbons and Mines (ONHYM) retains a compulsory share of 25% of any exploration license or development permit. The Moroccan government also has a discretionary right to limit all foreign majority stakes in the capital of large national banks.
Obligation to Declare
Investment system in Morocco is very open as investors do not have to obtain prior approval: they simply have to send the Foreign Exchange Office a report in the six months following the completion of the operation. 
Competent Organisation For the Declaration
Foreign exchange office
Requests For Specific Authorisations
The financial sector has specific regulations, as well as that of hydrocarbons and air and maritime transport.

Office Real Estate and Land Ownership

Possible Temporary Solutions
Consult Instant Offices, CoWorker, Regus, etc.
The Possibility of Buying Land and Industrial and Commercial Buildings
Guaranteed except for the agricultural sectors, where foreigners may only rent the land for up 99 years. However, foreigners may acquire agricultural land in order to carry out an investment or other economic project that is not agricultural in nature, subject to first obtaining a certificate of non-agricultural use from the authorities.
Risk of Expropriation
Expropriation may only occur in the public interest and with a fair compensation. If the State and owner are able to come to agreement on the value, the expropriation is complete, otherwise the amount of compensation will be established by a judge.

Investment Aid

Forms of Aid
Incentives generally take the form of tax exemptions and customs advantages, subsidies for certain expenses related to investment, etc. Tailor-made incentives can be agreed directly with the government for certain investment projects.
Detailed information is available on the official portal Invest in Morocco.
Privileged Domains
In addition to the tax exemptions granted under the common law, Moroccan law provides specific financial, tax and customs advantages to investors, as part of agreements or investment contracts to be concluded with the State, provided that they meet the required criteria. This concerns:
- the contribution of the state to certain investment expenses through the Investment Promotion Fund;
- the contribution of the state to certain expenses for the promotion of investment in specific industrial sectors and the development of modern technologies through the Hassan II Fund for Economic and Social Development;
- exemption from customs duties under Article 7.I of the Finance Act No. 12/98;
- exemption from import VAT under Section 123-22 °-b of the General Tax Code.
Privileged Geographical Zones
The industrial sector has been at the centre of Morocco's investment development policies, through to the country's "Industrial Acceleration Plan" 2014-20 and 2021-25. Furthermore, Morocco is increasingly investing in the energy sector.
The Agricultural Development Agency (ADA) provides incentives for investments in the agricultural sector.
Free-trade zones
There are industrial parks (Bouskoura, Meknès, etc.), technoparks (Casa Technopark) and free zones (which were recently transformed into “Industrial Acceleration Zones”, providing a 15% corporate tax rate following an initial five years of exemption). Furthermore, the government established the Casablanca Finance City (CFC).
To know more about the incentives available in each zone of the country, refer to the list of the regional investment centres.
Public aid and funding organisations
The Investments Commission, the Hassan II Funds for Economic and Social Development and Funds of Promotion of Investments. For further information, visit the dedicated page on the website of Invest in Morocco.
Furthermore, the Caisse Centrale de Garantie (CCG) is a public finance institution which offers co-financing, equity financing, and guarantees.
 
 

Investment Opportunities

The Key Sectors of the National Economy
Textile-clothing, tourism, agriculture, aquaculture, automotive.
High Potential Sectors
Call centers, high-technology, green energy (the country has the world’s largest concentrated solar power facility with storage, near Ouarzazate)
Privatization Programmes
In recent years, Morocco has launched an ambitious program of privatisation in many sectors of the economy. The largest privatisations were carried out in the sectors of mobile telephony, finance, tobacco stores and water supply.
Nevertheless, as of March 2021, the Moroccan Treasury held a direct share in 225 state-owned enterprises and 43 companies, including telecommunications companies, banks, and insurance companies, as well as railway and air transport companies (US Department of State).
The government relaunched Morocco’s privatization program before the Covid-19 pandemic but the plan was delayed. The 2022 budget schedules the privatisation of Marsa Maroc, Maroc Telecom, La Mamounia, Energie Electrique de Tahaddart (EET), Biopharma and Sonacos.
Tenders, Projects and Public Procurement
Tenders Info, Tenders in Morocco
Global Tenders, Tenders in Morocco
MCA Morocco

Sectors Where Investment Opportunities Are Fewer

Monopolistic Sectors
The Moroccan government holds a monopoly on phosphate extraction through the 95% state-owned Office Cherifien des Phosphates (OCP). Moreover, several sectors remain under public monopoly, managed either directly by public institutions (rail transport, some postal services, and airport services) or by municipalities (wholesale distribution of fruit and vegetables, fish, and slaughterhouses).

Finding Assistance For Further Information

Investment Aid Agency
Moroccan Investments and Exports Development Agency (AMDIE)
 
 
 
 

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Passport and Visa Requirements | Taxes and Restrictions On Persons When Going Through Customs | Health Precautions | Safety Conditions

 

Passport and Visa Requirements

Passport and Visa Service
Formalities for the visitors (Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
Visa HQ
Moroccan Representations abroad
Hotel reservation websites
 
Check IATA Travel Website for visa requirements and health advices.
 
 
 

Taxes and Restrictions On Persons When Going Through Customs

How to Refund Consumption Tax
The country is in the process of setting up a system.
A statement must be requested from the trader and then initialed by the customs officer before presenting to a 'First Tax Free' counter.
Other Requirements
Magazines which are erotic in nature or which could disturb the law and order cannot be carried.

Health Precautions

Obligatory Vaccination and Other Recommendations
It is recommended that everyone 16 years of age and older should get fully vaccinated for COVID-19 before travel and present, if necessary, evidence of COVID-19 vaccination at the border. The updated information on all health entry requirements as well as on routine and recommended vaccines for Morocco are provided on the dedicated pages on TravelHealthPro and CDC websites.
A certificate of vaccination against polio is required for all travelers from poliomyelitis-affected countries. The following vaccines are strongly recommended: tetanus, diphtheria, rabies, typhoid fever, chickenpox, influenza, measles, hepatitis A and B and poliomyelitis. The risk of malaria (exclusively in the benign form of P. vivax) is limited from May to October in certain rural areas of the following provinces: Al Hoceima, Chefchaouen, Khouribga and Taounate. However, other insect-born illnesses, such as typhus, are common as well — for instance, the fresh water parasite schistosomiasis. Therefore, disease prevention is recommended. Always use insect repellent and wear long, loose-fitting clothing to prevent insect bites. To protect oneself against traveler's diarrhea (tourista), it is recommended to avoid foods which are more at risk. This includes pre-cooked dishes and cold soups, seafood, meats, undercooked fish, raw vegetables as well as unpeeled fruits. Drinking water must be boiled, filtered or consumed in sealed bottles. Decontaminating tablets (Hydroclonazone, Micropur) are partially effective. Drinking water is supplied in all the big cities and in certain villages, but it is recommended to drink mineral water. Wash fruits and vegetables carefully, consume meat that is well-cooked and avoid bathing in the wadis and dams.
Hotel reservation websites
CDC Traveler's Health

Safety Conditions

Hotel reservation websites
Site of the US Department of State
Lonely Planet

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Accommodation | Eating Out | Getting Around | Time and Time Difference | Climate | Electrical Standards and Measurement Systems | Paying | Speaking | Emergency Numbers | Communications

 

Accommodation

Hotel reservation websites
Maghreb Tourism
TourMag

Eating Out

Rules For Eating Out
A tip of few Dirhams is expected
 
Food Specialties
Moroccan food is prepared with exquisite spices, vegetables and fruits, fish and meats. It is influenced by Arabic, French and Andalusian Spanish cuisine.

Specialty dishes include:
- B'ssara: broad bean soup that is usually eaten for breakfast with toppings such as olive and cumin and a side of bread
- Kebabs: pieces of beef or chicken marinated with spices
- Couscous: tiny wheat flour pasta granules, similar to rice, often served with meat and vegetables
- Lamb barbecue: whole lamb roasted on a skewer
- Pastilla: served with pigeon, chicken or seafood, this recipe contains flavours from the Middle-East and North-Africa
- Tajines: a clay pot dish that uses red or white meat and is made with a sauce of vegetables or dry fruits
- Fish chermoula: a coastal dish of fish marinated in herbs and spices before being grilled over hot coals

Popular desserts:
- M'hancha: known as a Moroccan almond snake pastry, this dish is made from flattened and coiled pastry that is stuffed with almond paste
- Ma'amoul: shortbread pastry stuffed with nut varieties like pistachios, walnuts and almonds and mixed with fillings like dates and figs
Drinks
Tea is found everywhere. A particular favourite consumed by Moroccans is Chinese green tea, which is garnished with mint and sugar. Coffee is also another staple drunk by many Moroccans.
Fresh fruit juices are varied and popular.

Alcohol is relatively rare, though the Meknès region produces pleasant wines.

Dietary Restrictions
The only dietary restriction in Morocco is the prohibition of consuming pork.
Table Manners
Traditionally, the right hand is used for eating.

Getting Around

Means of Transport Recommended in Town

Urban transport services
Independent Agency of Urban Transports of Casablanca (RATC)
Independent Agency of Urban Transports of Rabat (RATR)
Find an Itinerary
Taxi services
Taxi-Essaouira
 

Transportation From Airport to City Centre:


Airport

Distance

Taxi

Bus

Train

Car Rental
Rabat - Sale (RBA) 9 km / 6 miles private cars and shuttle vans -- Available
Casablanca - Mohammed V (CMN) 25 km / 16 miles MAD 200-300 / 30-40 min MAD 20 / 45 min MAD 35 / 30 min Available
Marrakech - Menara (RAK) 6 km / 4 miles MAD 60 / 10-15 min MAD 3 - Available
 

Means of Transport Recommended in the Rest of the Country

Train reservation services
Railway National Office
 

Major airlines

NameTypeDomestic FlightsInternational Flights
Royal Air MarocMajorYesYes
Jet 4 YouLow-costNoYes
RyanairLow-costNoYes

You Can Consult The EU Air Safety List. Look Also at the rating of the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

 
 
 

Travelling By Yourself

Car rental agencies
Europcar
Auto Escape
Moroccocar
Real-time traffic conditions

Time and Time Difference

Summer Time
+1h between May 31 and September 28.
 

Climate

 
Type of Climate
Morocco is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the North and the Atlantic Ocean to the West. Inland, the Atlas mountain range runs through the centre of the country, between which lie vast plateaus of grasslands. To the South, the Sahara borders the country. As such, Morocco has both Mediterranean and desert climate, with mild temperatures along the coast and a drier, hotter interior. The further away from the coast, the more extreme the seasons. During the summer, temperatures range from 35oC during the day but can drop quickly to 5oC at night in the desert. Winters along the coastline average between 12oC and 25oC, while the inlands, for example in the Northern Plateau region, have colder winters ranging from 5oC to -7oC. Rainfall is most likely to occur in April, May, October and November. The Atlantic coast is the wettest region of Morocco.
Hotel reservation websites
Morocco-Weather
 

Electrical Standards and Measurement Systems

System of Measurement Used
Metric system
Unit of Measurement of Temperature
Celsius Degree
 
 
Electricity
 
  • Voltage
220 V
  • Frequency
50 Hz
Type of Electric Socket
C and E
Type of Telephone Socket
French
DVD Zoning
Zone 5

Paying

Domestic Currency
Moroccan Dirham
ISO Code
MAD
To Obtain Domestic Currency
The national currency is the Dirham (MAD). The currency was made convertible in 1993.
Possible Means of Payment
Bank cards are accepted in some large institutions of the main cities.
Foreign currencies, euros in particular, are accepted in tourist areas.
 

To Find a Cash Machine Where You Need, Use the ATM locator

 

Speaking

Official Language
Arabic and Tamazight (Berber)
Other Languages Spoken
60% of the population speaks Moroccan Arabic while 30% to 40% speak Tamazight (Berber). Moreover, it is important to note that French is the second language of Morocco and occupies a very important place in public life. Finally, Spanish is also spoken in the north of the country. English is moslty used by Moroccans who have studied abroad (mainly in the United States).
Business Language
French is used in a commercial context with Arabic for administration.

 

Emergency Numbers

Emergency police19
Royal police177
Fire-fighters15

Communications

Telephone Codes
To Make a Call From Morocco, Dial 00
To Make a Call to in Morocco, Dial +212 + 6 for mobile phones or 212 + 5 for fix phones.
Mobile Telephone Standards
GSM
National Mobile Phone Operators
There are 3 operators who by order of importance are: Maroc Telecom, Orange and Inwi
 

Availability of Internet

Internet Suffix
.ma
National Internet Access Providers
There are more than 500 service providers, but only 2 access providers: Maroc Télécom through its subsidiary company Ménara and Inwi.

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

In this page: Communities of Expatriates | Ranking of Cities | Renting an Apartment | School System | Health System | Tourism and Culture | Individual and Civic Freedoms | Religion

 

Communities of Expatriates

The Number of Expatriates
Approximately 50,000 foreigners, including 28,000 French.
They are particularly concentrated in Casablanca and Rabat, as well as in old districts of historical cities, Marrakech in particular, and on the coasts. One finds an important community of pensioners.
Blogs For Expats
Allo Expat
Expat Focus
Hotel reservation websites
Internations
Immigration Authority
Department of Foreigners of the Commission of the Province
Transportation Companies For Moving/Removals
Bailly moving
Menna
 
 

Ranking of Cities

Cost of Living
According to the latest available edition of the Cost of Living Worldwide City Rankings Survey by Mercer, Casablanca and Rabat are ranked 158th and 174th respectively out of 227 cities worldwide in terms of cost of living.
Quality of Life
According to the latest available edition of the Quality of Living Worldwide City Rankings Survey by Mercer, Rabat is ranked 117th out of 231 cities worldwide in terms of quality of living.
Hotel reservation websites
Quality of Living Worldwide City Rankings (Survey by Mercer)
Cost of Living Worldwide City Rankings (Survey by Mercer)

Renting an Apartment

Average Lease Term
Term of the lease is 3 years minimum for a vacant apartment.
No rules for a furnished apartment.
Average Rental Costs
All depends on the type of location.
Price is sometimes negotiable.
Rental Agency Websites
Mubawab
Hotel reservation websites
Mubawab

School System

The Education System
The system is derived from the French system. Primary education (from 6 to 10 years) in Arabic is supplemented by a secondary education in the school (10-14 years) and secondary school (15-18 years) leading to the A levels. Then one can enter the university where French is dominating in majority of the matters. ;
Strong disparities are observed between the teaching level in the cities and in the countryside.
International Schools
An important network of French schools (called "Missions") from the kindergarten to the final year. Spanish schools have developed. Finally, 2 American schools (Casablanca and Rabat) offer many departments.
Hotel reservation websites
Department of Education
Scholaro
American Schools, on the CAS site

Health System

The Healthcare System
Hospitals in big cities are decent, though certain specialties are not always available.
On the other hand, in the rural areas, the quality and quantity of health infrastructures are problematical.
International Hospitals
There are relatively few international hospitals.
Nevertheless, one can go to the Cheikh Zaid International Hospital in Rabat and the Ifrane International Hospital.
Health System Insurance Body
Health Insurance National Agency (ANAM)
Health Ministry
Health Ministry

Tourism and Culture

Different Forms of Tourism

Historical
There are many sites in Morocco that are UNESCO Heritage listed.
The archaeological site of Volubilis was once an ancient Roman town. Its closest city is Meknes, near Fez and Rabat.
Chefchaouen is the well-known city of blue-washed homes: it is also a major place to buy local handicrafts, such as wool garments and woven blankets.
Aït Benhaddou is an ancient fortified city of Ouarzazate along the historic caravan route between Marrakech and the Sahara desert.
Cultural
Jemma El-Fnaa in Marrakech is a giant square where you can find musicians, artists and dancers all in one place.
In Fez, the Medina is a UNESCO Heritage Site where you can find a maze of souks with stalls that have been owned by families for generations.
One can appreciate the time-honoured works of tanner artisans in Tétouan. In a more modern range, there are the Arab-Andalusian and Berber musical concerts, the Villa of Arts in Casablanca and the Majorelle Villa at Marrakech.
Nature
There are an impressive variety of countrysides in Morocco, including the forests of the Rif, plains lined with orchards, the Middle-Atlas, mountain tops of the High-Atlas, as well as rock and sand deserts to the South.
Religious
Morocco has many spiritual sites to visit. While mainly an Islamic country, it is tolerant of all religions.
The Hassan II mosque in Casablanca is one of the biggest in the world and is famous for its Moroccan architecture.
Thermal
As of now there are only 2 important sites, Moulay Yaacoub and Sidi Harazem near Fès, but the sector is being fully developed.
Beach
Visitors to Morocco are spoilt for choice, as they can choose between both the Mediterranean and Atlantic coastline. Along the Atlantic coastline popular seaside towns include Taghazout and Mazagan, which are popular with surfers. Also, Agadir beach is world-renowned for its sandy coastline, which is kilometers long.
Mediterranean beaches, such as Tétouan and Al Hoceima, are particularly popular.
Winter Sports
Alpine skiing and ski-tourism are practiced during winter in the High-Atlas mountains, mainly in the Oukaïmeden and Toubkal mountains, which are close to Marrakech.
Outdoor Activities
There is a wide variety of sports available depending on the area visited. There is mountain sports (trekking, ski, rafting), sea sports (sailing, jet-ski, water-skiing), golf and parachuting, etc.
Shopping
Morocco is well-known for its markets. The souks of big cities offer plenty of shopping opportunities. Visitors should also be on the look-out for items from the Moroccan craft industry, isuch carpets, leather-made goods, and pottery, as well as argan, which oil is a product that originates from Morocco and is highly sought-after for its numerous virtues.
 
 
Tourism Organisations
Administration of Tourisme
Cultural Organizations
Ministry of Culture
Royal Institute for Amazighe Culture
Hotel reservation websites
Tourism in Morocco

Individual and Civic Freedoms

Civil Liberty
5/7
World Ranking of Freedom of the Press According to "Reporters sans Frontières", 2021 report : 136/180

Religion

Beliefs
Islam is the state religion, practiced by almost the entire population, but freedom of religion exists. 90% of Moroccans are Sunnis by faith, of the Malikian rite.
The day is punctuated by five prayer calls. During the month of Ramadan, the Moroccans fast, do not drink and smoke from sunrise to sunset.

 

© eexpand, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: April 2024

Morocco

Business opportunities

Main imports in recent years, reports, directories, fairs, sanctioned companies ...

More information
© Export Entreprises SA, All rights reserved.
Last update: May 2021

Financial solutions to boost you beyond our borders

Export advances

  • A credit limit
  • An amount is available for you the whole year
Request info

International expansion service

  • Reduce costs
  • Open an account from Spain in 11 countries
Request info