Morocco’s trade deficit expands due to expensive energy imports
Morocco’s trade deficit up to June surged to 150.5 billion dirhams or 14.6 billion dollars as the country sustains a heavy energy bill on the back of soaring commodities prices.
The trade gap expanded 48.7% as the domestic economy recovers and demand grows on imports of semi-products and equipment required by the local industry increase.
Imports rose 44% to 365 billion dirhams outweighing exports which also increased 42% to 215 billion dirhams.
Morocco spent 71.48 billion dirhams on energy import, including diesel and petrol whose bill stood at 34.5 billion dirhams. Morocco’s only refinery has been shutdown since 2015 leaving the country totally reliant on imports.
Recently, a campaign has been staged on social media ranting at the expensive fuel prices.
As Morocco faces one of the worst droughts in its recent history, the purchases of soft wheat surged 55% to 13.3 billion dirhams.
Phosphates and fertilizers exports rose 84% to 57.4 billion dirhams offsetting some of the impact of higher imports.
Fertilizers prices in the international market rose under the impact of export halt by Russia and higher demand.
Morocco’s auto industry saw sales expand to 53 billion dirhams, followed by textile with 22 billion dirhams and the aerospace industry with 10 billion dirhams.
Tourism revenues increased 206% to 27.3 billion dirhams signaling a steady recovery of the Covid-19 hit sector.