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Drought, Coronavirus Drag Down Moroccan Growth Forecasts

Drought, Coronavirus Drag Down Moroccan Growth Forecasts

Wednesday, 25 March, 2020 - 08:45
Farmers carry containers of strawberries, to be exported, after picking them in a field in the town of Moulay Bousselham in Kenitra province. (Reuters)
Casablanca - Lahcen Mokena

A Moroccan business center has expected the country's economic growth to drop to 0.8 percent this year due to drought and the impact of the new coronavirus on non-agricultural sectors.


The Centre Marocain de Conjuncture (CMC) noted that agricultural production will decline by 3 percent in 2020 compared to 2019. Last year’s season had also witnessed a sharp drop in production due to drought.


As for non-agricultural sectors, the CMC expected a slowdown in growth as a result of COVID-19.


Tourism is one of the most affected sectors amid estimates of a drop by 25 percent and a slow and difficult revival.


The transportation sector will also take a significant hit. The minerals and extraction industries will be impacted by the drop in global demand. Growth in the mineral sector is expected to drop 2.5 percent, said the center.


Growth in the manufacturing sector is predicted to drop to less than 2 percent, said the CMC, noting that several industrial establishments are suffering from a shortage in raw material and others are facing difficulties in accessing the markets. Several factories have already stopped production, especially in the car making sector.


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