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Morocco forecasts stable 2020 fiscal deficit of 3.5pc

Published : Sunday, 20 October, 2019 at 12:00 AM  Count : 70

RABAT, Oct 19: Morocco's fiscal deficit is expected to be unchanged at 3.5per cent of gross domestic product in 2020, the government's draft budget showed.
The estimate, which edges closer to meeting Morocco's medium-term debt-to-GDP goal of 3per cent, was based on expected privatisation receipts of 3 billion dirhams ($313 million), the document seen by Reuters shows.
Other factors influencing the deficit in 2020 include the cost of a public wage hike set at 6 billion dirhams and the allocation of 26 billion dirhams to boost the purchasing power of the poor, it said.
The cost of subsidies of sugar, semolina and cooking gas would be cut to 13.6 billion dirhams in 2020 from 18 billion this year.
The portion of the budget going to education would expand to 72.4 billion dirhams while that of health would jump to 18.6 billion dirhams. Both have been identified as priority spending areas in the draft budget. Assuming an average cereals harvest of 7 million tonnes and an oil barrel price at 67 dollars, growth is expected to stand at 3.7per cent in 2020 from 2.9per cent in 2019.    -Reuters

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