Blue sky thinking? Can tourists save Moroccan economy?


Morocco appears to be pulling itself out of a rut as much hope is placed on tourism to inject vital foreign currency into the central bank’s coffers.

Recent data released from the ministry of economics claims that this year’s tourist numbers – as opposed to revenue – have reached over 70 percent of pre crisis levels.

According to, which sources government data, tourism receipts reached 62.2 billion dirhams (5.8bn USD) at the end of September 2022, up 149.9% compared to the same period a year earlier, although the former period was the climax of the covid crisis which saw record low visitors to the Kingdom.

“These revenues recorded a recovery rate compared to their pre-crisis level of 103.5%, after 41.4% a year earlier, specifies the DEPF in its note on the economy published in November 2022” says

“For the third quarter, these receipts reached a record level of 34.8 billion dirhams, recording a recovery rate of 130.6% after 101.3% in Q2-22 and 61.9% in Q1-22, compared to the same periods of the year 2019, claims the government ministry”.

As regards tourist arrivals, they amounted to 7.7 million tourists, while the number of nights spent in the classified accommodation establishments, reached 13.3 million overnight stays, representing respectively 76% and 69% of their pre-crisis level. Compared to last year, arrivals and overnight stays increased by 173.5% and 99.3% respectively at the end of September 2022.

The data released however did not reveal actual revenues taken, which many widely believe are down due to a lower class of traveller coming to Morocco, with cheap package deals “all in” offers on the increase. Data normally released from Rabat also doesn’t distinguish between ‘foreigners’ and Moroccan migrants living in Europe returning to see families as so is inflated to some degree from the reality.


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