copy the linklink copied!Morocco

copy the linklink copied!Tourism in the economy

In 2018, tourism-generated GDP grew by 6.2% amounting to MAD 76.9 billion, compared to MAD 72.4 billion in 2017. Its contribution to national GDP reached 6.9%, up from 6.8% the previous year. Tourism plays an important role in the Moroccan economy thanks to its ability to create new jobs, contribute to economic and social development and bring in foreign currency. Revenues generated by international visitors to Morocco in 2018 reached almost MAD 89 billion (including international transport). This accounted for almost 51% of service exports in 2018. The tourism sector is an excellent source of jobs in Morocco, with 550 000 direct jobs in 2018, equating to 5% of total employment.

In 2018, the country recorded 12.3 million international arrivals. France, Spain and Germany remain the top three source markets, comprising 57.5% of the market share. The main inbound markets all increased between 2017 and 2018, with residents from Germany up by 10.1%, France by 7.6%, Spain by 6.4%, and the United Kingdom by 3.8%. Newer markets also performed well, including the United States, China, Poland and Brazil.

In 2018, internal tourism spending was estimated at MAD 131 billion, a rise of 5.4% from 2017. Domestic tourism expenditure reached MAD 41 billion, an increase of 4.4%. Overnight stays in classified tourism accommodation establishments were up 8.7% in 2018 (after an increase of 14.8% from 2016 to 2017), driven by a 12.1% increase in overnight stays by non-residents. Of the total overnight stays in hotels and similar establishments recorded in 2018 amounting to 24 million nights, 30% were made by residents. In 2018, 3.2 million domestic tourists were recorded, up 4.1% over 2017.

copy the linklink copied!Tourism governance and funding

The Ministry of Tourism of Morocco develops and implements the tourism policy for the government through the Department of Tourism. It has a General Secretariat, an Inspectorate General and other executive directorates covering strategy and co-operation, regulation development, quality, resources and training. The following central bodies operate under the Department of Tourism: The National Moroccan Tourist Office - promotes, commercialises and develops Morocco as a tourist destination and stimulates air travel; and the Moroccan Agency for Tourism Development, which promotes investment opportunities and offers guidance to investors and operators in the tourism industry.

The Department of Tourism is supported by a regional structure consisting of seven regional offices and 18 provincial units. Their main tasks are to supervise the quality of tourist activities and monitor the development of tourist products at regional and local levels. They work closely with a range of local authorities and tourism stakeholders to ensure that the sector grows evenly and consistently at the regional and local level.

In 2017, the scope of the Ministry of Tourism expanded to include the aviation sector and accordingly, two new structures were placed under the jurisdiction of the Ministry: the National Office of Airports, overseeing airport management; and the General Directorate of Civil Aviation, responsible for missions relating to civil aviation.

The National Confederation of Tourism acts as a point of contact between the private and public sectors. The Confederation’s mission is to promote the private sector and link all tourism professions at the national level through the industry’s national federations. The Confederation represents hotels, travel agencies, car rental companies, restaurants, tour and mountain guides, tour operators and investors. Regional tourism councils bring together professionals from the private and public sector, with the mission to support destinations through the improvement and promotion of Morocco’s tourism offer nationally and internationally.

The budget for the Ministry of Tourism comes from the central budget and totalled MAD 860 million in 2019 and has been increased by about 41% compared to 2018. It is divided between the entities under the Ministry’s responsibility: Central Administration, regional and provincial delegations (39%); Moroccan National Tourist Office (35%); the Moroccan Society for Tourism Engineering (19%); and, training schools (7%).

copy the linklink copied!
Morocco: Organisational chart of tourism bodies
Morocco: Organisational chart of tourism bodies

Source: OECD, adapted from the Department of Tourism, 2020

copy the linklink copied!Tourism policies and programmes

Since 2011, the Department of Tourism has been implementing Vision 2020. The Vision builds on the achievements of Vision 2010, and is based on a model which recognises both the importance of economic development and the preservation of tourism resources and environments. Vision 2020 is a strategy focused on regional tourism, quality and sustainable development. It is committed to making tourism a driver of economic, social and cultural development in Morocco.

The tourism industry is facing new macroeconomic and political challenges, which influence both the purchasing power of inbound markets to Morocco and the investment potential of industry players. The following trends have been identified as critical factors for Morocco’s tourism:

  • Continued acceleration of the digital revolution and new channels of promotion and distribution,

  • Increasing individual and independent travel made possible by low-cost offers,

  • New patterns of customer behaviour throughout the value chain,

  • The emergence of new outbound markets - the tourism sector is doing well due to the sustained growth in the BRIC economies and has boosted its performance in the Chinese market since removing visa requirements for Chinese nationals.

In developing regional tourism, the Department of Tourism works with its partners to adapt and upgrade governance structures, giving decentralised services a greater role in the implementation and development of tourism in their respective territories. Initiatives aiming to support regional tourism development include:

  • Enhancing the attractiveness of Morocco as a destination is a key priority. Efforts are being made by the Department of Tourism, through the Moroccan National Tourist Office, to ensure the visibility and accessibility of Morocco's offer from targeted markets. These activities include:

    • Establishing partnerships with leading online tour operators,

    • Developing communication campaigns through major websites and the major airline web platforms,

    • Event-based communication, increased communication via social networks; organisation of familiarisation trips for journalists, tour operators and influencers/bloggers; and, the acquisition of media space along with the dissemination of content on digital media and digital platforms.

  • Enhancing the competitiveness of air transport to support growth in tourism, especially through strategic partnerships with main outbound countries and new markets with high potential,

  • Stimulating tourist investment by adopting new measures to incentivise and support investors in both existing and new facilities,

  • Restructuring of the tourism sector and supporting players in order to boost economic competitiveness, in particular by updating and reviewing laws governing tourism professionals and improving industry oversight,

  • Increasing the quality of training to improve the response to industry needs, by diversifying the training offer, restructuring training establishments and signing international partnership agreements for training in tourism and hospitality,

  • Strengthening quality standards throughout the tourism value chain in order to guarantee an offer that meets market needs and addresses the key challenges.

copy the linklink copied!
Regulatory Reform in Morocco

Regulatory overhaul is one of the strategic priorities of Department of Tourism in Morocco. Through this, it aims to improve the competitiveness of tourism businesses in order to meet the challenges of the sector. Regulatory reform of tourism legislation has been implemented with the ambition of establishing a culture of quality within tourist establishments, and to ensure better professionalism and structure of tourist activities. To date, legislation updates and revisions have been made in specific tourism sectors, including travel agents, tourist establishments and accommodation. In February 2018, in accordance with existing laws, the Department of Tourism launched a review of licensing relating to city guides, tour guides and nature guides. At its conclusion, the programme had led to the certification of 1 108 guides, including 905 in the category of city and tour guides and 203 in the category of natural area guides. This programme also encouraged the integration of guides mastering new languages such as Mandarin, Japanese, Russian, Swedish, Polish, Turkish, Dutch and Portuguese.

copy the linklink copied!Statistical Profile

copy the linklink copied!
Morocco: Domestic, inbound and outbound tourism

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

TOURISM FLOWS, THOUSAND

Domestic tourism

Total domestic trips

..

..

..

..

..

Overnight visitors (tourists)

2 403

2 645

2 929

3 120

3 247

Same-day visitors (excursionists)

..

..

..

..

..

Nights in all types of accommodation

195 778

..

..

..

..

Hotels and similar establishments

5 307

5 899

6 551

7 055

7 166

Other collective establishments

52 222

..

..

..

..

Private accommodation

138 249

..

..

..

..

Inbound tourism

Total international arrivals

..

..

..

..

..

Overnight visitors (tourists)

10 283

10 177

10 332

11 349

12 289

Same-day visitors (excursionists)

..

..

..

..

..

Top markets

France

..

..

3 280 e

3 530 e

3 800 e

Spain

..

..

2 180 e

2 350 e

2 500 e

Germany

..

..

600 e

690 e

760 e

United Kingdom

..

..

620 e

655 e

680 e

Belgium

..

..

590 e

630 e

650 e

Nights in all types of accommodation

132 000

125 609

128 757

132 585

147 790

Hotels and similar establishments

14 326

12 525

12 703

15 046

16 866

Other collective establishments

22 601

24 165

25 224

26 861

30 953

Private accommodation

95 073

88 919

90 830

90 678

99 971

Outbound tourism

Total international departures

..

..

..

..

..

Overnight visitors (tourists)

1 849

1 744

1 704

1 849

1 923

Same-day visitors (excursionists)

..

..

..

..

..

Top destinations

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

..

TOURISM RECEIPTS AND EXPENDITURE, MILLION USD

Inbound tourism

Total international receipts

9 071

7 764

7 923

9 086

9 523

International travel receipts

7 384

6 260

6 557

7 494

7 775

International passenger transport receipts

1 686

1 505

1 365

1 592

1 748

Outbound tourism

Total international expenditure

2 273

2 155

2 311

2 829

3 019

International travel expenditure

1 456

1 402

1 460

1 793

2 007

International passenger transport expenditure

817

753

852

1 036

1 011

.. Not available; e Estimated value

Source: OECD Tourism Statistics (Database).

 StatLink http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/888934078680

copy the linklink copied!
Morocco: Enterprises and employment in tourism

Number of establishments

Number of persons employed

2018

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

Total

..

505 000 e

507 000 e

515 000 e

532 000 e

550 000 e

Tourism industries

5 534

391 800 e

393 300 e

399 300 e

412 000 e

424 000 e

Accommodation services for visitors

..

..

..

..

..

..

Hotels and similar establishments

4 055

128 000 e

128 500 e

130 500 e

135 000 e

140 000 e

Food and beverage serving industry

..

82 000 e

82 300 e

83 600 e

86 000 e

90 000 e

Passenger transport

..

34 000 e

34 100 e

34 600 e

36 000 e

37 000 e

Air passenger transport

..

..

..

..

..

..

Railways passenger transport

..

..

..

..

..

..

Road passenger transport

..

..

..

..

..

..

Water passenger transport

..

..

..

..

..

..

Passenger transport supporting services

..

..

..

..

..

..

Transport equipment rental

..

..

..

..

..

..

Travel agencies and other reservation services industry

1 479

22 300 e

22 400 e

22 700 e

23 000 e

24 000 e

Cultural industry

..

10 000 e

10 000 e

10 100 e

10 000 e

10 000 e

Sports and recreation industry

..

2 500 e

2 500 e

2 500 e

3 000 e

3 000 e

Retail trade of country-specific tourism characteristic goods

..

113 000 e

113 500 e

115 300 e

119 000 e

120 000 e

Other country-specific tourism industries

..

..

..

..

..

..

Other industries

..

113 200 e

113 700 e

115 700 e

120 000 e

126 000 e

.. Not available; e Estimated value

Source: OECD Tourism Statistics (Database).

 StatLink http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/888934078699

copy the linklink copied!
Morocco: Internal tourism consumption
Million MAD

2014

Domestic tourism expenditure

Inbound tourism expenditure

Internal tourism consumption

Total

..

..

..

Consumption products

32 000

73 508

105 508

Tourism characteristic products

21 648

53 666

75 315

Accommodation services for visitors

6 196

11 962

18 158

Food and beverage serving services

5 318

10 088

15 406

Passenger transport services

4 868

14 212

19 080

Air passenger transport services

..

..

..

Railways passenger transport services

..

..

..

Road passenger transport services

..

..

..

Water passenger transport services

..

..

..

Passenger transport supporting services

..

..

..

Transport equipment rental services

122

..

122

Travel agencies and other reservation services industry

43

1 100

1 143

Cultural services

106

1 017

1 123

Sports and recreation services

2 416

8 032

10 449

Country-specific tourism characteristic goods

2 580

7 256

9 836

Country-specific tourism characteristic services

..

..

..

Other consumption products

10 352

19 841

30 193

Tourism connected products

..

..

..

Non-tourism related consumption products

10 352

19 841

30 193

Non-consumption products

..

..

..

.. Not available

Source: OECD Tourism Statistics (Database).

 StatLink http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/888934078718

Metadata, Legal and Rights

This document, as well as any data and map included herein, are without prejudice to the status of or sovereignty over any territory, to the delimitation of international frontiers and boundaries and to the name of any territory, city or area. Extracts from publications may be subject to additional disclaimers, which are set out in the complete version of the publication, available at the link provided.

https://doi.org/10.1787/6b47b985-en

© OECD 2020

The use of this work, whether digital or print, is governed by the Terms and Conditions to be found at http://www.oecd.org/termsandconditions.