Tourism revenues reached 9.7 billion dirhams (MAD) by the end of March 2022, up 80% compared to the same period the past year, said, Monday, the Minister of Tourism, Handicrafts and Social and Solidarity Economy, Fatim-Zahra Ammor.
This performance confirms a recovery in the sector, noted Ms. Ammor, who was speaking at the House of Representatives (lower house), adding that exports of handicrafts posted a 25% increase during the same period.
Regarding the social and solidarity economy, the ministry is working to strengthen the legal and regulatory framework and the creation of regional hubs, she pointed out.
Ms. Ammor also highlighted the various measures undertaken to revive the tourism sector, in particular the launch of an emergency plan of 2 billion dirhams, the payment of the lump sum compensation of 2,000 dirhams, before Aid Al Fitr, for all employees in the sector, tourist carriers and classified restaurants and the postponement of the repayment of bank credit maturities for tourist companies.
In addition, the ministry has received 781 requests for the renovation of hotel establishments, which will be undertaken in the coming days, she said, recalling the deployment of a major advertising and marketing campaign to relaunch the sector, with the objective of doubling the number of arrivals by 2030.
As for the craft sector, Ms. Ammor said that the ministry is carrying out structuring work, through the strengthening of the legal and regulatory framework relating to craft activities and medical coverage, and the establishment of the national register crafts platform, which organizes 172 professions, noting, in this regard, that 96,000 professionals are registered there.
Regarding tourism investment, Ms. Ammor stressed that her department has reoriented the interventions of the Moroccan Society of Tourism Engineering (SMIT) towards tourism investments that better meet the demands of tourists, by exploiting a study carried out by the Moroccan National Tourism Office (ONMT) on the expectations of Moroccan and foreign tourists.
Among the important programs aimed at encouraging investment, the minister mentioned incentive subsidies for the creation of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the tourism sector and financial support from the State, with an overall budget of 1 billion MAD, for the renovation of tourist accommodation establishments.
The new investment charter, the main lines of which were presented to HM King Mohammed VI, will allow a sustainable and inclusive economic recovery, said Ms. Ammor, noting that the Mohammed VI Fund for Investment will make it possible to obtain the necessary support to finance and accompany the investment.
The occupancy rate of classified hotel establishments was only 50% before the crisis linked to Covid-19, noting that in order to increase this rate, the ministry has set up communication campaigns in partnership with airlines and international travel agencies.