COVID-19: Morocco launches rescue plan for tourism sector

Morocco’s battered tourism sector will receive a lifeline provided operators retain 80% of jobs, according to a public-private deal covering 2020-2022.

The plan will help restore 2019 levels in two years through direct aid to the sector including through maintaining social support measures.

This means the employees who had to stop working because of Covid-19 will continue to receive a stipend of 2000 dirhams ($200) monthly, according to the plan.

Operators will also benefit from a postponement of tax and loan payments as well as easy access to bank loans.

The rescue plan provides for measures to adapt Morocco’s tourism offer and strengthen its competitiveness in the post-coronavirus era.

Special attention will be given to promoting domestic tourism as an alternative during the pandemic.

Law 30.20 was adopted by the government to enable businesses operating in the tourism sector including hotels, travel agencies and airlines to exchange bookings canceled over the coronavirus outbreak with a similar offer for a similar price.

Tourism represents 7% of Morocco’s gross domestic product, generates $7.8 billion in hard currency receipts and employs directly 550,000 people with 13 million international arrivals in 2019, making the country one of Africa’s busiest destinations.

The country was among the top five most hit tourism markets in the globe by the pandemic according to the IMF.

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