IMF-WB annual meetings to go ahead as planned in Marrakech on Oct 9-15
The IMF, the World Bank and the Moroccan government confirmed Marrakech will host the annual meetings as planned on October 9-15, in a boon for the earthquake-hit tourism industry in the country.
The confirmation came in a joint statement signed by World Bank President Ajay Banga; International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva; and Morocco’s Minister of Economy and Finance Nadia Fettah Alaoui.
“The Managements of the World Bank and IMF, together with the Moroccan authorities, have agreed to proceed with holding the 2023 Annual Meetings in Marrakech from October 9 to 15, adapting the content to the circumstances,” reads the statement.
The decision was based on assessment of Marrakech capacity to host the event taking into consideration that the meetings would not disrupt relief and reconstruction efforts and that the safety of participants can be assured, it says.
“As we look ahead to the Meetings, it is of utmost importance that we conduct them in a way that does not hamper the relief efforts under way and that is respectful to the victims and the Moroccan people,” said the statement.
“At this very difficult time, we believe that the Annual Meetings also provide an opportunity for the international community to stand by Morocco and its people, who have once again shown resilience in the face of tragedy. We also remain committed to ensuring the safety of all participants,” it said.
The news came to reassure the tourism industry in the country after panic led many tourists to cancel bookings.
Tourism businesses look at the event as a chance to attract more tourists and reflect an image of resilient Morocco in the face of the earthquake which mainly affected High Atlas villages killing around 3000 people.
Tourism operators believe that the best way to show solidarity with Morocco is by visiting the country and contributing to its economic development.