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Tuesday, December 6, 2022

The trade deficit increases by 42.9% at the end of March

Morocco’s trade deficit increased by 42.9% at the end of March 2022 compared to the same period in 2021, to stand at -65.57 billion dirhams (MMDH), according to the Foreign Exchange Office.

Imports reached 165.55 billion dirhams for the first three months of the current year, against 123.42 billion dirhams at the end of March 2021, an increase of 34.1%, while exports increased by 29% standing at 99.98 billion dirhams at the end of March against 77.52 billion dirhams in 2021, specifies the Office which has just published its monthly indicators of foreign trade for the month of March.

The coverage rate, meanwhile, lost 2.4 points to stand at 60.4% against 62.8%.

The increase in imports of goods concerns the majority of product groups, observes the Office, noting that imports of semi-finished products rose by 52.4% due to the increase in purchases of ammonia which than quadrupled from 1.03 billion dirhams to 5.42 billion dirhams.

At the same time, the energy bill increased by 87.3%, mainly due to the increase in supplies of gas oils and fuel oils (+6.18 billion dirhams) due to the rise in prices of 77.4% (7,884 DH/T against 4,444 DH/T). Imported quantities also recorded an increase of 5.3% totaling 1,689mT at the end of March 2022 against 1,604mT at the end of March 2021.

For their part, imports of raw products rose by 78.3%, the Office said, noting that this increase follows, mainly, the increase in purchases of raw and unrefined sulphur, which more than tripled (+ 3.229MDH).

With regard to imports of food products, these rose by 24.3%, an evolution essentially dependent on the significant increase in barley purchases which amounted to 1.37 billion dirhams at the end of March 2022 against only 248 million of dirhams (MDH) at the end of March 2021. Oilcake and wheat supplies increased by 43.7% and 11.4% respectively.

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