The High Commission for Planning (HCP) released a report on Wednesday that traces the characteristics of the Moroccan labor market and the unemployment rate in 2018.
Morocco’s working age population, aged 15 and older, numbered 25,950,000 people in 2018, but the active population of people employed or seeking employment was 11,979,000. Of those aged 15 and over, 13,970,000 are neither employed nor seeking employment, notes the report.
Overall, 46 percent of the working age population were active in 2018. Men are far more likely to be active than women. While 71 percent of men are employed or seeking employment, only 22 percent of women are.
In cities, the active rate reached 42 percent and 54 percent in rural areas.
Rates of the active population are similar between varying levels of education. Among individuals without degrees, 46 percent are employed or seeking employment. Of those with high school degrees, 43 percent are active, and of those with university degrees, 56 percent are active.
The highest rates of employment compared to the overall working age population in the country by region are 64 percent in Dakhla-Oued Ed-Dahab, 45 percent in Marrakech-Safi, and just under 45 percent in Casablanca-Settat.
The regions of Guelmim-Oued Noun, Laayoune-Sakia El Hamra and the Oriental have the lowest employment rates, registering 34 percent, 36 percent, and 37 percent, respectively.
Forty-two percent of employed Moroccans work in the service sector, while 35 percent are manual laborers in agricultural fields, 12 percent work in the industry and crafts sectors, and 11 percent work in the construction sector.
Meanwhile, there are about 45,000 foreigners in Morocco. Twenty-three percent come from Arab countries, 37 percent from Europe, and 33 percent from sub-Saharan Africa. A majority of foreigners, 60 percent, are male. Foreigners also tend to be highly educated, with 84 percent holding degrees.
A slightly higher percentage of foreigners in Morocco, 51 percent, are employed or seeking employment compared to Moroccans at 46 percent. However, the employment rate between foreigners and nationals is much closer: 44 percent among foreigners and 42 percent among nationals.
A decrease in unemployment rate
According to one of the commission’s latest briefings, unemployment in the country dropped from 10.2 percent to 9.8 percent between 2017 and 2018.
The Moroccan economy made slight progress from 2017 to 2018, creating 112,000 jobs, 91,000 in urban areas and 21,000 in rural areas, up from 86,000 new jobs in 2017.
Across all sectors, the study details that the demographic of potential workers between the ages of 35 and 44 are more likely to be employed than those aged 15 and 24, an HCP 2018 report stated.