According to a communiqué by the Spokesperson of the Royal Palace, Abdelhak El Mrini, His Majesty King Mohammed VI, may Allah assist Him, chaired on October 19 at the Royal Palace in Rabat a Ministerial Council devoted to examining the general guidelines of the 2024 Finance Bill and approving a bill and a draft decree relating to the military field, three international conventions, and the appointment of a number high-level officials.
Here follows the communiqué:
“His Majesty King Mohammed VI, may Allah assist Him, chaired, on Thursday, 3 Rabii II 1445 H, corresponding to October 19, 2023, at the Royal Palace in Rabat, a Ministerial Council focusing on the examination of the general guidelines of the 2024 Finance Bill and approving a bill and a draft decree relating to the military sector, three international conventions and a number of appointments to high office.
At the start of the Council’s proceedings and in accordance with the provisions of article 49 of the Constitution, the Minister of Economy and Finance presented before His Majesty the King an outline of the 2024 Finance Bill.
The Minister stressed that the preparation of this Finance Bill is ongoing in a context marked by a downturn in global economic activity, persistent geopolitical tensions, and rising inflationary pressures and energy prices, in addition to the impact of the tragic earthquake that struck the Kingdom last September.
Morocco had demonstrated, under the Wise Leadership of His Majesty the King, may Allah preserve Him, a positive and effective response to this natural disaster. In application of the High Royal Directives, an integrated, multidimensional program has been drawn up, encompassing all sectors and aimed at rebuilding and upgrading the affected regions, which concerns almost 4.2 million citizens of the affected regions, for an estimated budget of MAD 120 billion over five years.
The Minister added that the Finance Bill aims to pursue the reforms launched and implement the priorities outlined in the Royal Speeches and the governmental program.
The general orientations of the 2024 Finance Bill revolve around the implementation of the “Program for the reconstruction and general upgrading of the regions affected by the Al Haouz earthquake”, the consolidation of the foundations of the Social State, the implementation of structural reforms, and the strengthening of the public finances sustainability .
The general orientations of the 2024 Finance Bill are structured around four main points:
First: The implementation of the “General reconstruction and upgrading program for the regions affected by Al Haouz earthquake”, and the reinforcement of measures to combat the cyclical impacts: In application of the High Royal Directives, this program will be rapidly implemented through an integrated approach and coordinated governance based on the establishment of the High Atlas Development Agency within a conventional framework involving all stakeholders, with contributions from the General State Budget, local authorities, the “Special Fund for the Management of the Effects of the Earthquake that Hit the Kingdom of Morocco”, and Hassan II Fund for Economic and Social Development, in addition to international aid and cooperation.
In parallel with the mobilization of additional funds to meet social dialogue commitments, the management of water resources is a priority, with faster implementation of the National Drinking Water Supply and Irrigation Program, and support for agricultural inputs to reduce inflation and support citizens’ purchasing power.
Second: The consolidation of the foundations of the social State: in particular through the implementation of the Royal project for social protection, via the ongoing generalization of the Mandatory Basic Health Insurance for the benefit of underprivileged populations, together with the gradual operationalization of direct social assistance from the end of the current year, by supporting it with the targeting system of the Unified Social Register, as affirmed by His Majesty the King in the Opening Speech of the Parliament.
This program targets 60% of Moroccan families who are not currently covered by social security programs. Given the importance of this major Royal societal project, and in recognition of the high regard that His Majesty the King, may Allah glorify Him, attaches to vulnerable and disadvantaged families, it is planned that the total value of direct social assistance will not be less than MAD 500 for each targeted family, irrespective of its composition.
This societal project will be accompanied by the completion of the legal framework relating to the rehabilitation of the national health system, and the continuation of the reform of the education and training system, as one of the pillars of the social State.
In the application of the High Royal Directives, priority will be given to the implementation of the new housing assistance program.
Third: The continued implementation of structural reforms: notably through the finalization of the reform of the justice system, in order to reinforce the rule of law and guarantee the legal and judicial certainty necessary to achieve overall development, as well as the implementation of the High Royal Directives relating to the revision of the Family Code.
Pursuant to the High Directives of His Majesty the King, may Allah glorify Him, productive investment will be an essential lever for revitalizing the national economy and ensuring Morocco’s foothold in promising productive sectors, notably through the ongoing operationalization of Mohammed VI Fund for Investment and the implementation of the new Investment Charter, to boost investment dynamics and contribute to the successful implementation of a number of structuring reforms in the fields of agriculture, tourism, administrative reform and the process of administrative deconcentration and advanced regionalization.
Fourth: The reinforcement of public finance sustainability: particularly through the reform of the Organic Law on the Finance Law, the continuing development of innovative financing, as well as the promotion of the public portfolio and improvement of its performance, while ensuring the effective implementation of the framework law on tax reform and the controlled and rational management of administrative operating expenses.
The Minister pointed out that the Finance Bill is based on assumptions of a growth rate of 3.7% in 2024 and a budget deficit of 4% of the GDP.
Following the approval of the General Guidelines of the Finance Bill for the year 2024, the Ministerial Council approved a draft law and a draft decree relating to the military field.
The draft law aims to grant the status of wards of the Nation to children who were victims of “Al Haouz earthquake”, which struck this province on September 8, 2023, and impacted the prefecture of Marrakech and the provinces of Chichaoua, Taroudant, Ouarzazate, and Azilal.
The draft decree is an amendment to the decree implementing the law on Wards of the Nation, in application of the High Royal Directives aimed at improving their situation and living conditions, by granting each person with the status of ward of the Nation, on an individual basis, the fixed allowance reserved for this status, irrespective of the number of members taken into care, instead of providing for a single allowance shared equally between the children of the same family.
As part of Morocco’s international commitments, the Ministerial Council approved three multilateral conventions, two of which are part of the Kingdom’s gradual accession to the legal mechanisms of the Council of Europe, open to non-member States. These are the Civil Law Convention on Corruption and the Criminal Law Convention on Corruption.
Observations and reservations will be made in this respect regarding any provisions that conflict with national legislation.
The third convention relates to a protocol adopted by the International Civil Aviation Organization to expand the scope of membership of the Organization’s Council and its Air Navigation Commission.
In accordance with the provisions of article 49 of the Constitution, and on the proposal of the Head of Government and at the initiative of the Minister of Interior, His Majesty the King, may Allah preserve Him, has kindly appointed a number of Walis, Governors, who are:
- Saaid Amzazi, Wali of the Souss-Massa region, governor of Agadir Ida Outanane prefecture;
- Mohamed M’Hidia, Wali of the Casablanca-Settat region, governor of Casablanca prefecture;
- Farid Chourak, Wali of the Marrakech-Safi region, governor of Marrakech prefecture;
- Younès Tazi, Wali of the Tangier-Tétouan-Al Hoceima region, governor of Tangier-Asilah prefecture;
- Ali Khalil, Wali of the Dakhla-Oued Eddahab region, governor of Oued-Eddahab province;
- Abderrazzak Mansouri, Governor of Tetouan province;
- Hassan Zitouni, Governor of Al Hoceima province;
- Jamal Chaarani, Governor of Nador province;
- Abdellah Jahid, Governor of Ouarzazate province;
- Ismail Haikal, Governor of Tinghir province.
Upon the proposal of the Head of Government and the initiative of the Minister of the Interior, His Majesty the King has appointed:
- Mohamed El Guerrouj as Director General of the National Agency for the Regulation of Cannabis Activities;
- Loubna Boutaleb as Director of the Agency for the development of the Marchica lagoon site.
And on the proposal of the Head of Government and at the initiative of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation, and Moroccan Expatriates, His Majesty the King, may Allah assist Him, has appointed:
- Ahmed Tazi, His Majesty’s Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates;
- Fouad Akhrif, His Majesty’s Ambassador to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan;
- Mohamed Ait Ouali, His Majesty’s Ambassador to the Arab Republic of Egypt;
- Samira Sitaïl, His Majesty’s Ambassador to the French Republic;
- Abdelkader El Ansari, His Majesty’s Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China;
- Youssef Amrani, His Majesty’s Ambassador to the United States of America.
Upon the proposal of the Head of Government and on the initiative of the Minister of Economy and Finance, His Majesty the King appointed Abderrahim Chafai as President of the Insurance and Social Welfare Supervisory Authority.”