Morocco Approves Restructuring of Casablanca Finance City


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Meknes – Morocco’s Government Council on Thursday approved four bills and two decrees related to various economic and social developments. The approvals came during a meeting chaired by Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani, according to a press release from Government Spokesman Said Amzazi.

Draft bills approved

The Government Council approved 70.20, concerning the adoption of draft law 2.20.655 relating to the reorganization of Casablanca Finance City. Abdellatif Loudiyi, Minister Delegate to the Head of Government in charge of National Defense Administration, presented the decree on behalf of Minister of Economy and Finance Mohamed Benchaaboun.

On September 24, the government adopted a legislative decree restructuring the financial center in the city of Casablanca, which Benchaaboun presented to the Government Council.

Casablanca Finance City is a leading financial center in Africa, “at the crossroads of continents.”

The decree aimed to clarify the nature of financial activities in Morocco’s financial center. It also sought to boost its attractiveness to financial companies.

The government also approved draft-law 63.20, relating to decree-law 2.20.503, presented August 7. The bill aims to supplement decree-law 2.20.292, concerning state of emergency measures.

Morocco’s Government Council agreed on October 5 to extend the state of emergency until December 10. The government took the measure to help make swift, necessary decisions to curb the spread of COVID-19.

The third draft bill concerns the adoption of the decree-law 2.20.690, presented in September by the minister of industry. It relates to the “issuance of exceptional provisions related to the fines that [bank clients] must pay to recover the possibility of issuing checks.”

The fourth draft law concerns benefits for self-employed workers affiliated to Morocco’s National Social Security Fund (CNSS).

On March 19, Morocco’s economy minister announced that the Special Fund for the Management and Response to COVID-19 was set to provide stipends for workers.

The operation covered all CNSSregistered employees whose pay was suspended due to the pandemic.

CNSS’s COVID-19 support measures are part of Morocco’s campaign to counter the socio-economic repercussions of the crisis.

Draft decrees approved

The council also examined and approved two draft decrees. The first relates to the monitoring of quality and health safety of canned and semi-preserved vegetable products on the market. 

The second decree concerns the creation of a temporary department within the Ministry of Equipment, Transport, and Logistics to supervise the construction of  a new harbor in Safi, western Morocco.

On August 22, the government presented a decree to postpone the deadline for the end of construction work on Safi’s new harbor.

Safi’s port will contribute to the economic and social development of the Marrakech-Safi region.

The council completed its work by examining proposals for appointments to high offices, in accordance with Article 92 of the Constitution.

The Government Council approved the appointment of seven officials in the Ministry of Health, two in the Ministry of Transport and Logistics, and two in the Ministry of Housing and Urban Policy.

Morocco’s upcoming vaccination campaign

Regarding COVID-19, El Othmani said during the meeting that citizens should not show “complacency” and should respect the “precautionary and preventive measures that authorities call for.” The country is preparing to launch a large-scale vaccination campaign. 

El Othmani spoke earlier with the minister of health about the campaign, which is set to start “soon.” Citizens should trust authorities regarding the vaccination campaign, he added.

The head of government said Morocco’s Ministry of Health is working in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO). The choice of the vaccine was based on the recommendations of the national scientific committee responsible for monitoring the clinical trial experiences in which Morocco is participating.

Morocco signed on August 20 two agreements with China National Biotec Group Company Limited (CNBG) on clinical trials for a COVID-19 vaccine.

El Othmani expressed his sorrow over the “critical pandemic situation in Morocco, especially with increasing numbers of positive cases and deaths day after day.”

Despite the upcoming vaccination campaign, the head of government urged citizens not to show “complacency” and to respect the “precautionary and preventive measures that authorities call for.”

El Othmani also expressed his satisfaction with the efforts of health workers.