Morocco's long stagnant economy to grow 10 percent
Morocco's economy, which has stagnated for two years, will grow by 10.3 percent in 2001, a private economic think-tank has forecasted, while criticizing the government's longstanding economic policies.
The agriculture sector is expected to grow 39 percent, thanks to improved rains following two years of drought, Ahmed Labboudi, the head of Centre Marocain de Conjuncture (CMC) said late Tuesday, February 13, at a press conference in Casablanca.
Among factors behind economic growth are improved weather conditions, along with the recent privatization of the state telecommunications facility, Maroc-Telecom, the drop in oil prices and a firming of the euro against the dollar, according to Habib Malki, a former agricultural minister who is CMC president.
Growth rates should vary across sectors, with a forecast of 2.3 percent in the electronics industry and 13.1 percent in construction and public works, the CMC said. The CMC forecasts are based on a survey among 116 Moroccan firms.
Investment in social housing and infrastructure from a $450 million government fund also spurred growth, the CMC said. But Malki said Morocco had lagged behind other countries for nearly two decades, registering an average growth of around three percent. "The economic policies pursued were aging compared to progress in the Euro-Mediterrean world," Malki said. —(AFP)
© Agence France Presse 2000
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