The Covid-19 health crisis has damaged several key sectors, including tourism, resulting in unprecedented losses. And Morocco has not escaped it.
In its report entitled “Covid-19 and tourism: Access to economic consequences”, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) ranked Morocco in 7th position among the countries most affected by the pandemic on the tourism side, based on 15 countries.
Thus, the report forecasts several negative scenarios and changes for Morocco, notably the 5% drop in tourism-related GDP in the case of an optimistic scenario. In the average scenario, the loss will reach minus 7%. As for the most pessimistic scenario, it forecasts a loss of the order of minus 10%.
But not only ! The report indicates that losses in the tourism sector in Morocco will reach 6 billion dollars. And that, in the most optimistic scenario, while the pessimistic scenario forecasts a loss of $ 11.37 billion.
The organization discusses a number of changes related to sectoral production in tourism-related sectors. In the case of a moderate scenario, the report specifies that the loss will reach minus 55% in the area of recreational and other services. Same percentage of loss in the field of catering, accommodation and services.
In addition, the UNCTAD envisages a decrease of 5% for housing, 2% for trade, construction, financial services and insurance, air transport and communications, while losses for beverages and tobacco products would amount to 1% and 0.8% for a few selected sectors. That said, no variations for water and electricity were raised in the report. The same applies to motor vehicles and parts.
In terms of human resources and job loss, the report predicts, in an optimistic scenario, a drop in the wages of employees in the tourism sector by 5%, with a drop in unassessed employment which will experience a decrease of 6% for the optimistic scenario, 8% for the moderate scenario and 10% for the pessimistic scenario.
It will therefore be difficult for many employees and salaried workers to find employment in other deteriorating economic sectors, according to the report, given the economic crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
In the most pessimistic scenario, the report forecasts losses of $ 3.3 trillion, or 4.2% of world GDP, with a 12-month hiatus from international tourism. And the loss could reach $ 2.2 trillion, or 2.8% of GDP, if the suspension of international tourism continues for eight months.
Faced with this unprecedented tourism crisis, the United Nations calls on governments to protect workers by strengthening social protection in the countries affected by the crisis, and thus save people dependent on tourism from suffering from very serious economic difficulties, and thus offers to support them with wage subsidies, while helping tourism businesses threatened with bankruptcy.
To do this, the United Nations World Tourism Organization, along with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, has launched a program aimed at stimulating the recovery of the tourism sector in more than 10 countries around the world, including Morocco, which for years has been able to timidly but surely advance its tourism.
According to the details announced by the two institutions, the program includes a number of safety and health measures and protocols, in addition to incentive plans to boost demand for the sector after the multi-month Corona crisis.