Moroccan-Indian Tourism Cooperation Gaining Momentum
Morocco officially opened an office to attract more Indian tourists as the North African Kingdom seeks to diversify its tourism emitting markets.
“This office of the Moroccan tourism promotion agency will help us in planning various strategic promotional and awareness programs to tap the robust tourism sector in India”, Morocco’s Tourism Minister said in New Delhi.
Mohamed Sajid further stressed that Morocco is keen to enhance its cooperation with India in the tourism sector, in harmony with its new orientation towards emerging as a preferred destination outside the traditional Asian tourist market.
Air transport is unquestionably the bridge to attracting more visitors to Morocco. To that end, an agreement was signed between Morocco’s flag carrier Royal Air Maroc and Air India.
India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC) and La Societe Marocaine D’Ingenierie Touristique (SMIT) also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) under which they pledge to share engineering and tourism products development expertise. ITDC and SMIT agree to share database of potential Indian and Moroccan investors in the tourism sector.
They will also cooperate in new trends and technology in tourism products, in innovative tourism product development, marketing and feasibility studies related to the needs and expectations of investors and tourists.
Tourism in Morocco is the second biggest employer after agriculture, while India is the fastest growing outbound market after China with UNTWO expecting 50 million travelers by 2020.
With 7 pc GDP global growth rate, rising personal income levels and changing lifestyles and a huge middle class with the availability of low-cost airfares and diverse travel packages, India is rapidly becoming one of the fastest growing outbound travel markets in the world.
The Moroccan-Indian cooperation in the sector will enable Morocco to tap into this source market having huge potentials.
Morocco’s 10-year plan, Vision 2020, aims to double the size of tourist sector and boost revenues to $15bn annually by the end of the decade.
After 2017 with a record number of 11.35 million tourists visiting the country, Morocco targets receiving 12 million tourists in 2018 and 15 million in 2020.