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Morocco's tourism revenues up 123.3% in April

The country is beginning to recover after the losses caused by the pandemic, a trend that is expected to continue to improve during the summer
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According to the Department of Studies and Financial Forecasts (DEPF), tourism revenues in Morocco increased by 123.3% at the end of April 2022. This situation alleviates the losses suffered due to the pandemic and the closures that the Moroccan government had to implement in order to reduce the number of people infected by COVID-19.
 
Three months after the opening of the national borders, tourism revenues continue to grow in Morocco. The highest figure so far is in April, but according to experts, and following the relaxation of restrictions, the figure is expected to continue to grow throughout the summer. 
 
Following the increase through April this year, revenues now exceed $1.5 billion (14.62 billion dirhams), approaching pre-pandemic levels, a figure that analysts say could be higher if not for Ramadan in that month.


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 "This is a year-on-year growth of 123 per cent during the first four months of 2022," said Fatima Zahra Ammor, the Kingdom's Minister of Tourism. "The number of foreign visitors reached around 1.5 million people between January and April 2022," she added.
 
To support this trend, Operation Marhaba was launched on 5 June, a set of measures aimed at providing better reception and transit conditions for expatriate Moroccans, which will facilitate the entry of tourists into the country
 
In fact, in an attempt to facilitate such access to Morocco, the government has decided to submit e-visa applications for citizens of 49 countries, a number that will increase, starting with Israel and Thailand. These applications will be available from 10 July, according to the Moroccan Ministry of Tourism.
 
This opening process will also facilitate the entry of citizens with Schengen residency cards and those with European or American visas, as they will benefit from the new online processing.

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It is estimated that Morocco has lost more than 24 billion dollars (90 billion dirhams) due to a lack of tourism during the last two years marked by the pandemic. In a normal year, Morocco would have received more than 13 million tourists, but in 2021 the country was visited by only 3.7 million people.
 
This situation greatly weakened the tourism sector, despite the aid that the Moroccan government implemented. The government granted more than $500 million (2 billion dirhams) to employees in the tourism and hotel sector in the form of a monthly allowance. In addition, it gave some $250 million (1 billion dirhams) to hotel and resort owners, accompanied by a year-long exemption from bank payments

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Tourism continues to grow in Morocco thanks to the recovery of air routes to key markets for the sector, the relaxation of COVID measures and measures imposed by the government. This is a good argument for confidence in the improvement of the country's trade deficit situation, which, due to the higher import bill, has been damaged. 
 
One of these routes was the one that Turismo Costa del Sol carried out together with the Irish company Ryanair. The Spanish company developed different marketing campaigns to promote the routes between Morocco and Malaga-Costa del Sol airport, which has led to an increase in bookings and the flow of tourists between the two points.