In response to oral questions on “national tourism: assessment and future roadmap”, Ammor specified that the number of tourists who visited Morocco during the first five months of the year 2023 reached, for the first time , 5.1 million, an increase of 20% compared to the same period in 2019.
This increase, she explained, concerns Moroccans residing abroad and foreign tourists, who now represent 56% of the total number of tourists, compared to 51% in 2022, noting that national tourism has achieved, in during the year 2023, revenues of around 32 billion dirhams (MMDH), an increase of 40% compared to 2019.
Foreign currency receipts amounted, for their part, for the first time, to 93 billion dirhams, an increase of 16% compared to 2019, while the number of overnight stays reached 19 million, up 109% compared to to the year 2021.
She also noted that income from domestic tourism represented 42%, compared to 31% before the global health crisis, recalling, in this sense, that the results obtained by the national football team during the World Cup in Qatar have had a positive impact on national tourism and contributed to the influence of the sector.
As such, Fatim-Zahra Ammor explained that the feat of the national selection had a significant impact on the image of Morocco, and constituted a new opportunity for the influence of the tourism sector, notably through the emergence new markets such as the United States, Brazil, Argentina, the Middle East and sub-Saharan Africa. She also noted that her Department is working to materialize this interest in Morocco as a destination through effective visits by a greater number of tourists, and access to new markets, adding that many tourists have confided that the performance of the national team at the World Cup had motivated them to visit Morocco.
In this sense, the Minister declared that the figures show the unprecedented enthusiasm for the destination Morocco, specifying that the word “Morocco” has been searched for more than 17 million times on the internet and has received 180 million interactions on the social networks, compared to 500,000 before the World Cup.
Referring to the strategic partnership between the Moroccan National Tourist Office (ONMT) and the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF), sealed on June 7, the minister estimated that this action will contribute to the great influence of the Kingdom, both thanks to to football than to the numerous tourist potentialities with which Morocco abounds.
According to her, the performance of the tourism sector has been “very positive”, thanks in particular to the emergency plan for which a budget of 2 billion dirhams has been allocated as well as to the efforts made to increase the capacity in air transport seats.
Ammor, who expressed his optimism about the future of the sector following the adoption of an ambitious roadmap using a participatory approach after a precise and in-depth diagnosis, noted that the diagnosis revealed in particular that Europe represents 70% of outbound markets, and that the cities of Marrakech and Agadir attract 60% of tourists. In this sense, she considered that the governance of the sector “was not appropriate”, particularly in terms of coordination at central and regional levels”.
And to note that a budget of 6.1 billion dirhams has been allocated to the tourism sector roadmap for the period 2023-2026, with the objective of reaching 17.5 million tourists by 2026. , to achieve 120 billion dirhams in foreign exchange earnings, and to create 200,000 new direct and indirect job opportunities.