in Morocco, Aziz Akhannouch loses the employment battle

in Morocco, Aziz Akhannouch loses the employment battle
in Morocco, Aziz Akhannouch loses the employment battle

“Since Aziz Akhannouch set down his bags at Méchouar [où se trouve la présidence du gouvernement]the national economy continues to destroy jobs”, notes the Moroccan magazine As is, which devotes its front page this week to the government’s inability to create jobs. It shows a photo montage in which the Prime Minister, businessman Aziz Akhannouch, is standing, with next to him a sign similar to that of a store, but which reads: “We are not recruiting.” “Aziz Akhannouch, the man who does not create jobs”, finally headlines the magazine.

According to figures from the High Commission for Planning, the official statistics body, 157,000 net jobs were destroyed in 2023, despite positive economic growth of 2.8% forecast for the past year. More than a million and a half Moroccans are today unemployed. And the unemployment rate stands at 13% of the active population in 2023, a “record” according to As is.

Rural environment

The figures show that it is young people aged 15 to 24 (35.8% of the unemployed) and women, of whom only 19% are employed, who are the most affected. “Astonishing for a government of techno-liberal inspiration and whose business fiber gave hope that Morocco would experience an economic boom”, writing As is.

In defense of the Akhannouch government, the magazine explains that the “external shocks” and the years of drought experienced in the kingdom can partly explain the destruction of jobs, particularly in rural areas, where 198,000 positions were lost. But in the cities, industry, the battlehorse of the government formed by a coalition of three political parties two years ago, is struggling to create sufficient jobs.

In reality, it is small businesses and services that create the most jobs, with 15,000 net new positions in 2023. In summary, As is diagnostic “growth that does not create jobs, poorly distributed spatially, and an economic machine that is visibly seized up”.

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