Morocco is a country that, despite adversity, has always known how to move forward and has demonstrated over time the resilience of the Moroccan people. A new report from the country’s Central Bank reveals that the Kingdom knew how to do this resist the economic setbacks of recent years and managed to grow economically.
According to the institution, Kingdom banks were able to withstand internal and external conditions that have arisen and consequently economic activity has not slowed down as expected. The document says that the stability of banking in the country and the implementation of bailout measures for the sector, such as safety valves, have been key to keeping the economy moving.
The institute’s director of supervision, Heba Zouhi, showed in the report that banking activity increased in 2021 compared to that produced in 2020. This translates into a good monetary policy adopted during the second year of the pandemic crisis progress in vaccinating the population and maintaining fiscal and monetary stimulus measures. He also adds that the excellent crop year data was critical after the COVID-19 shock.
“The indicators of the sector in general, in terms of liquidity, profitability and solvency, have shown the solidity and resilience of the banking system despite the context of a high level of risk”Zouhi said.
The Moroccan Central Bank stresses that the effects of the arrest of the pandemic have been decisive in not stagnating the sector. Actions have focused on the imposition of measures such as digitization of financial servicesthe direct development of the relationship between banks and affiliates and the creation of financing for sustainable projects.
“The sector has demonstrated its resilience and has been able to secure the financing of economic actors, thanks to public support measures in the form of state-guaranteed loans”continues the director.
Today, with the easing of anti-COVID measures, banks have been able to continue to grow and, consequently, some mechanisms have ended up allowing banking policies to increase and produce more profits.
This involved, for example, the the growth of bank lending to the non-financial sector. It has grown 3% more than usual and has been crucial for companies and manufacturing sectors to continue developing their business.
Despite these good data, the country’s financial institutions are still worried about problem loans. During the pandemic, lending increased and created a cumulative debt of 76.4%. As a result, the non-performing debt increased further by 8.5% to reach 85.1 billion dirhams.
The Central Bank states that these loans were created as part of the fight against the effects of the virus and therefore a risk monitoring has been put in place to assess the amount of loans and monitoring of non-performing loans. This is why the monetary authorities have tried to solve this problem with the creation of a settlement agency following the non-payment of many individuals and companies in the course of 2021, leaving all the repercussions to the banks.
The report underlines this the bank strengthened its regulatory and operational frameworkand was therefore able to meet the demands during the health crisis, thus protecting the entire Moroccan economic system, both its own institution, the country and customers who fear what will happen after the pandemic.
In this context, the institution intends to implement an action plan for financial working groups to ensure financial integrity and establish a fight against money laundering. Furthermore, the national economy was supposed to start growing at 1% and reach 4% by 2023.