Morocco Population and Economy 1994
The 1994 census recorded 26,074,000 residents, confirming a high rate of population increase (around 20 ‰ per year), although in constant and slow decline compared to previous years; This trend is confirmed by the estimation 1998 (27. 377. 000 residents) from which it appears for the second half of the nineties an annual increase of 18‰. The other social indicators are improving, but still far from values that can be considered fully satisfactory: the infant mortality rate in twenty years has roughly halved, but is still 51% (1997); the share of illiterate people fell by more than 20 percentage points in the same period, but still remains high (56 % of the adult population); life expectancy, although significantly increased, barely reaches 66 years for men and 71 years for women. The share of urban residents approaches half of the total (54 % in 1998), aggravating the situation of the peripheral areas of the main urban centers, although not in itself excessively high. The most populous cities are Dār al-Baydā ‘(Casablanca), with 2. 941. 000 residents, And the capital, Rabat, with about 1. 386. 000 residents (1994) in the urban agglomeration.
The population of working age (especially in its male component) continues to feed substantial migratory flows, which have seen their destinations diversify in the last 15 ÷ 20 years: alongside the traditional French destinations, in fact, Spain and Italy since the early 1980s, as well as other European countries. On the other hand, given the strong demographic increase, the young population of Morocco is permanently growing, and it is estimated at about 250. 000 every year young people who for the first time attempt a job placement (many of them with higher education or university preparation), fueling the persistence of a share of unemployed estimated in about 16 % of the working population.
Despite the persistence of undoubted structural difficulties, the country’s economic conditions have progressed over the last few decades, as can also be seen from the GDP per resident figure. which in 1998 reached 1250 dollars a year. The growth of the wealth produced has been a constant of Morocco since the 1970s – if we ignore some unfavorable conjuncture – and has often recorded particularly positive years: most recently, 1996, during which GDP growth was estimated to be equal to ‘ 11, 8 %, especially thanks to exceptionally rich crop year.
Agriculture, in fact, continues to maintain a very important role in terms of both income produced (approximately one sixth of the total) and population employed (almost 41 % of assets in 1995); both values have been decreasing for a long time, but in a gradual and moderate manner. For its part, the industrial sector has preserved more or less steadily since the Seventies its share of GDP (around a total terzodel), and has grown consistently workers (equal to 26, 6 % of the workforce) ; it should be noted that since the early nineties manufacturing productions alone have accounted for more than 20% of GDP, thus contributing to reducing the weight, in particular, of mining production. Finally, all service activities saw an increase in both the number of employees (almost 33 % of the total) and the share of GDP achieved (44 %); the contribution of tourism is increasingly important (around 2 million arrivals in 1998). For Morocco economics and business, please check businesscarriers.com.
The progress of the modernization process, which has been underway for decades, can be deduced with sufficient evidence from this whole. These considerations, if in no way detract from the persistent and serious income inequality or the weight of foreign debt or the accentuated passive balance of trade (only partially offset by emigrants’ remittances), seem to confirm that the readjustment policies adopted for some time have had a substantially favorable outcome, without causing profound upheavals of the consolidated socio-economic assets. Part of the positive result can be ascribed, moreover, to the confidence accorded to Morocco on the international level, which guaranteed an always considerable influx of foreign investments (for 34% guaranteed by France). These sometimes had specific interventions as their objective, such as the campaign launched in 1993 – 94 for the reduction of the cultivation of Cannabis indica and the consequent reconversion of cultivation in the Rif region.
More generally, it must be emphasized that Morocco occupies a very delicate geopolitical position (defined by some as a buffer between Europe and Africa, or between the West and fundamentalist Islam), firmly supported by Western countries and international organizations also through the funding channel.. The problems of international politics are not, however, resolved. On the one hand, the question of the already Spanish Western Sahara has not reached a legal definition, although Morocco occupies the area to all effects, materially controlling at least 80%. On the other hand, Morocco has not yet obtained the association with the European Union, but only a free trade agreement mainly aimed at regulating the exports of fish and citrus fruits to the Union. EU countries absorb about 63 % of Morocco exports and supply it with about 56 % of imports; Hence the evident interest of Morocco to enter into more stable relations with the Union, however, clashing with a series of reservations expressed at various levels regarding both the conditions of democracy within the country and the question of Western Sahara.