Tourism: The sector finds a breath of fresh air

By Meriem Idrissi Minister of Tourism, Handicrafts and Social Economy, Fatim-Zahra Ammor, said Morocco welcomed around 10.9 million tourists in 2022, gradually returning to its pre-level Covid-19 crisis. Responding to a question on the “review of the 2022 tourist season” during oral questions in the House of Representatives on February 1, 2023, Fatim-Zahra Ammor pointed out that the number of tourists in the Kingdom recovered last year. the latter at nearly 84% of the 2019 level. In front of the deputies, the minister added that foreign exchange earnings from tourism reached 81.7 billion dirhams at the end of November, i.e. a recovery rate of 112%. She also pointed out that this result was due to the Kingdom’s professional approach to dealing with the Covid-19 health crisis, which succeeded in restoring confidence on the international scene. Furthermore, the good scores are also the result of the government’s actions within the framework of the contingency plan to support the tourism sector, additional promotion and marketing measures, the guarantee of flights to Morocco and the full involvement of professionals and other partners, said Ms. Ammor. Momentum of 2022 World Cup success The Minister also pointed out that the national team’s historic performance in the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, drew unprecedented attention to the Kingdom. The word “Morocco” has been searched for more than 17 million times in search engines and shared on social networks more than 180 million times. However, the normal annual average is around 500,000. This will also have a positive effect on the tourism sector, she continued. She also pointed out that this effect has led to the opening of new markets for Moroccan destinations, such as the United States, Brazil, Argentina, the Middle East and sub-Saharan Africa. She announced that efforts to translate this unprecedented global interest into tourist numbers will be deployed very soon. Regarding domestic tourism, Ms. Ammor said that the recovery is more than 101% compared to 2019. She pointed out that the number of tourist overnight stays increased by +27% compared to 2021 and +1% compared to 2019 at 7.9 million. Box Increased cooperation between Morocco and China Chinese companies are already investing heavily in Morocco, with many in the technology and automotive sectors seeing it as an important market to expand into Africa, the Arab world and even Europe. On the sidelines of the Chinese New Year celebration, celebrated on January 22, the Chinese Ambassador to Morocco, HE. Li Changlin, mentioned the potential avenues of cooperation between Morocco and China. “Sino-Moroccan relations have entered a new era since the historic visit in 2016 of His Majesty King Mohammed VI to China”, investment and tourism will be the most important areas of cooperation between the two countries. The area of ​​tourism can be strengthened as the Chinese become more and more familiar with Morocco, given the importance that China places on Moroccan culture, according to the ambassador. “I think that in the future, the Chinese will arrive in large numbers in Morocco for their business, their investments, but also for tourism,” he added.