Every year, back to school and Eid al-Adha are important moments for Moroccan households, in terms of changes in habits or constraints, including pecuniary. Once again this year, the impact of these expenses is all the more important as the start of the school year and the Eid holiday take place almost at the same time.
Moroccan households, especially the most disadvantaged, face extraordinary double expenses. For the 20% of the poorest households, the total of this double expenditure would exceed about 78% of their average total expenditure over a month.
According to data from a recent national survey on household consumption and expenditure, conducted by the HCP (High Commissioner for Planning), the ritual of sacrifice is not performed by all Moroccan households: 4.7% of them did not complete in 2013. This proportion has decreased compared to the 2000/2001 period when it reached 5.2%.
The non-fulfillment of this ritual is most often made by urban households or people living alone. Urban households are more likely not to sacrifice a sheep than rural households (5.9% vs. 2.5%). People living alone are the least affected by sacrifice (46.5%). This proportion falls to 0.8% for households made up of at least 6 people.
Moreover, it turns out that “the more you are rich and educated, the more you tend to avoid this religious obligation,” says the HCP, figures in support.
Nearly 12% of the households belonging to the 10% of the wealthiest population do not sacrifice sheep, compared with less than 2% for households belonging to the 10% of the poorest population. Similarly, 11.6% of households with a higher education level fit this trend, compared to 4% for those without a level of education.
The sacrifice takes about 29% on average of the monthly expenditure of the Moroccan household. On the basis of this average, the financial burden on the household budget varies according to their standard of living: it represents more than half (57%) of the monthly total expenditure for the 10% of the poorest households, compared to 15 % for the 10% most affluent.
Eid al-Adha represents nearly 41% of the annual quantity of red meat consumed by households. This quantity is higher for the 20% of the poorest households (65.4%), unlike the wealthiest quintile (31.3%).
The average price of slaughter animals, on this occasion, amounted to 1841 dirhams in 2013 against 1100 dirhams thirteen years earlier (in 2000/2001), thus registering an increase of 67%, the equivalent of +4 % annually. The expenditure generated by all households reached 13 billion dirhams.
On the back-to-school side, prices in the education sector have tended, in recent years, to increase continuously at a rate higher than inflation. Since 2007, the overall price in the sector has increased annually by 3.4% on average (which has resulted in a cumulative increase of 40% over ten years). The sectors of secondary and pre-secondary education are more dynamic in this area, with an average annual rise in their prices of 4%. It should also be noted the increase in registration fees (+4.7% on average), compared to tuition fees (+3.3%).
The start of the 2013/2014 school year averaged 26% (around 1751 dirhams) of the monthly expenditure of Moroccan households with children in school (which represent 62.2% of the total number of households). For each educated person, this expense was 844 dirhams. It varies according to the place of residence, from 1093 dirhams per child in urban areas to 443 dirhams in rural areas. A household of the top 20% of the population bears a load 5.6 times higher than that of a household belonging to the 20% less affluent. These charges are respectively 2099 and 373 dirhams, according to the latest data from the HCP.