Does the Morocco of kings still have a future?

Morocco, Mohammed VI, monarchy, social crisis, health of the king, Western Sahara,

The latest data available from the Moroccan Central Bank is in the red: the report prepared by the Moroccan CB showed that Morocco’s non-performing debt rate has risen to 8.5% of net banking facilities at the end of 2021, compared to 8.2% at the end of 2020. Indeed, the central bank said in its annual report on Monday night that total hanging claims at the end of last year stood at 85.1 billion dirhams ($8.4 billion at today’s prices), up from 79.8 billion dirhams ($7.8 billion) at the end of last year.

“This slowdown in loan growth comes in a context marked by the end of the Moroccan state-guaranteed lending phase, which was created as part of exceptional measures to deal with the repercussions of the coronavirus crisis,” it reads.

We will not speculate on the health of the sovereign, which can, in case of aggravation, still shake all the cards, which has raised the fear of the Israeli authorities on the maintenance or not of the agreements made with Mohamed VI.

By concentrating the entire political, diplomatic, economic and lobbying battery to undermine Algeria and Algerian positions, Morocco has discovered its weakest sides: debts have increased, social anger has become more visible, even in the heart of Rabat, the slowdown of growth is latent, the Akhannouch government has been put on the grill, the high cost of living feeds all the tensions, the lack of raw materials, and icing on the cake, “thwarted flirtation” with Israel is widely noted.

Normalization” has not had the desired effect either on the economy or on Moroccan penetration into the heart of decision-making centers, as it would have wished; on the contrary, this completely unnatural, and therefore counterproductive, normalization has caused Morocco to lose points on the Maghreb, Arab, African and international scene. Its few supporters, however powerful they may be, risk unloading it at any moment, thanks to the war in Ukraine, which has brought about a decantation and has made each country ensure its back, starting with the United States itself.

In reality, Morocco is following a certain logic. Obsessed for almost half a century with the Western Sahara, it has allied itself with the three powers of the moment, the United States, Israel and France, making concession after concession, which in the end will undoubtedly be detrimental to the Moroccans first. As a member of the Moroccan-Israeli-American triple entente, born of the so-called “Abrahamic Pact” meeting, Morocco has since then followed an arrowed path and it will be difficult for it to question its route.

The kingdom’s failures call into question the very principle of the monarchy and should eventually lead Moroccans to engage in serious and profound reflection on the abolition of a regime that holds all powers and has led to constitutional abuses that have put the state itself in mortal danger. This is the observation made by Moroccans, and this is why, for Moroccan society, the time is ripe for protest, a protest that is not only the anger of those left behind. And this is also how Morocco has burned its cards with its Maghrebian and African environment, which observes the drifts of the last colonizer in Africa with a twisted eye and a stern lip.

L’Express, 27/07/2022

#Morocco #MohammedVI #Moroccan_Monarchy