Mr. Mohamed BENCHAABOUN, Minister of Economy and Finance co-chaired Friday September 21st in Rabat, the opening ceremony of the 12th international symposium of Public Finances together with the General Treasorer of the Kingdom, Mr. Nourredine BENSOUDA, Ambassador of France to Morocco, Mr. Jean-François GIRAULT, Honorary President at the French Court of Auditors', Mr. Jean Marie-BERTRANT, as well as Mr. Michel BOUVIER, President of the Association for the International Foundation of Public Finances (FONDAFIP) and Director of the French Magazine of Public Finances (RFFP).
This symposium, entitled "Finances publiques et justice sociale", (public finances and social justice) was also attended by several prominent figures, namely the Wali of Bank Al-Maghrib Mr. Abdellatif JOUHARI, the Minister of National Education, Vocational Training, High Education and Scientific Research, Mr. Said AMZAZI, and the President of the Economic, Social and Environmental Council (CESE), Mr. Nizar BARAKA.
During his speech, the Minister stated that the setting up of social justice and the satisfaction of citizens’ needs are two key factors for social cohesion. « Identify the necessary means and resources to meet the citizens’ needs and set up a best social justice are two key factors for social cohesion », he stressed. He noted that it is for the government, parliament, economic operators and civil society to pay a particular attention to social issues and citizens’ needs.
He thus pointed out that the State, which should fulfill its duties to preserve social cohesion and meet the citizens’ legal needs by providing high quality public services, namely in the field of education, health, housing, transport, …..etc, is no longer able to fight alone against poverty and address inequalities using the only financial resources of the State budget.
Besides, M. BENCHAABOUNE stressed that social policies directed to meet citizens’ needs depend on the implementation of reforms and strategic measures, the most important of which are the need for the coherence of those policies as well as complementarity and adequate coordination between all actors, with a clear distribution of competences between the State, local authorities, public entreprises and establishments, private sectors and civil society.
The Minister noted that Morocco, like other countries, has inequalities that public authorities are aware of. He ensured that Morocco introduced several reforms and implemented many projects to fight against poverty and reduce disparities. In this regard, he referred for instance to the implementation in 2005 of the National Initiative for Human Development (INDH), the creation in 2012 of the Treasury Special Account entitled « Fonds d’Appui à la Cohésion Sociale » (Fund to Support Social Cohesion), specifying that all these actions and steps entail significant financial costs that the State Budget supports.
On the social level, M. BENCHAABOUNE stressed the importance of the implementation of the "Registre Social Unique" initiative, the launch of the third phase of the (INDH), the adjustment of deficiencies in the implementation of the RAMED program and the
Expansion of basic health care to cover all self-employed persons, students, non-employees persons engaged in their own activities and parents of the insured of the compulsory health insurance in public sector managed by the CNOPS.
Economically, the Minister focussed on the major role of the entreprise especially small and medium-sized entreprise, as a key vector for economic development, the creation of jobs and national wealth. He noted that the government will provide the economic fabric with the necessary support and assistance in terms of improving business climate, better access of very small, small and medium-sized entreprises to bank financing and public procurement, promotion of training and its ability to meet market needs and export enhancement.
For his part, the Ambassador of France to Morocco, Mr. Jean-François GIRAULT, welcomed, in this occasion, « the quality, density and regularity » of the franco-moroccan cooperation regarding public finances. He stressed that the theme selected for this event is one of the core responsibilities of the government.
He continued to pursue that public finances are the major tool for governmental decisions. In this respect, the priority of public expenditure should focus on immaterial assets and not essentially on physical infrastructure, he evaluated.