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Strategy of the sector of tourism: Vision 2020

The commitment of Vision 2020 means: continuing to make tourism one of the driving forces of economic, social and cultural development in Morocco. Its objective is to make Morocco one of the 20 great world destinations by 2020 and to make it a good example in terms of sustainable development in the Mediterranean region.

The objective of the Vision 2020 is to double the size of the sector and the accommodation capacity, with the creation of 200 000 new beds. This new capacity should double tourists' arrivals (coming from Europe and the emerging countries). 470 000 new direct jobs will be created across the country (1 million by 2020). Tourism revenues should reach 140 billion dhs on 2020 (a total amount of 1 000 billion). The Vision 2020 also plans to generalize tourism in the country and triple the trips made by the residents.

A generalized and coherent spatial planning

Nowadays, tourism in Morocco focuses largely on two destinations: Marrakech and Agadir, which account for more than the half of international overnight stays. This geographic concentration does not highlight all the potentials of Morocco. That is why a new planning and development policy was launched. Thus, eight areas were created as part of a coherence logic. The objective is to give them an international profile and help them gain a full-fledged destination status.

Two areas were established in the Atlantic and Mediterranean coasts:

• « Atlantic Souss-Sahara», it gathers sites of Agadir (including inland), Laayoune and Guelmim.

• « Mediterranean Morocco », it gathers sites of Saidia, Marchica and Cala Iris.

Four other areas were positioned in a mixed offer, cultural and seaside:

• « Atlantic Marrakech», anchored on the sites of Marrakech, Toubkal and Essaouira.

• « Morocco Center » is the destination of journeys to the sources of culture, history and welfare, thanks to a strong complementarity between the sites of Fez, Meknes and Ifrane.

• « North Cape », it gathers the sites of Tangiers, Tetouan, Chefchaouen, Asilah and Larache.

• « Atlantic Center », includes Casablanca, Rabat and El Jadida.

Finally, two areas are destined to be the windows of Morocco in terms of sustainable development:

• « Atlantic Great South », centered on the exceptional site of Dakhla.

• « Atlas and Valleys », anchored on Ouarzazate, the valleys, oases and the High Atlas.

A new institutional plan

Many structures were created to ensure the harmonious management of the new tourism economy. The High Authority for Tourism is a national authority of management which gathers, in the framework of a partnership, the State, the regions and the private sector. Its mission consists of ensuring the implementation of the Vision 2020 and strengthening the institutional legitimacy of tourism. Tourism development agencies were created gradually in the 8 tourism areas to guarantee the success of territorial strategies and regional tourism policy.

Six flagship programs

Six structuring programs were established around culture, seaside resorts and nature. These programs focus on sustainable tourism and high added value niches.

• Azur 2020 focuses on the seaside offer.

• Eco/sustainable development, aims to value the natural and rural resources by preserving them.

• Heritage, whose objective is to value the cultural identity of Morocco.

• Animation, Sport & leisure, which aims to create an offer of varied entertainment that complements the basic tourism infrastructures.

• High added value niches relating to business, welfare and health tourisms.

• Domestic tourism « Biladi » which will help to meet the expectations of Moroccans by offering them a suitable product.

The Vision 2020 also provides a National Program for Innovation and Tourism Competitiveness revolving around three main lines:

• The specific support for small and medium tourism businesses.

• The support of referral networks throughout the tourism value chain.

• The improvement and the management of tourism through a regulatory reform.

An integrated approach for sustainable tourism

The international tourists are more sensitive to sustainable tourism, as indicated by the proliferation of labels and the initiatives in the field. At the edge of its tourism development, Morocco has a unique opportunity to adopt a Moroccan model of sustainable tourism which will be a key competitive advantage. To support the deployment of the sustainable development domain in the Vision 2020, an integrated system will be implemented. It includes specific tools as well as evaluation and monitoring indicators. Thus, the system will help applying the sustainability criteria in regulatory standards and implementing financial mechanisms to support the development of eco-territories.

These actions will be complemented by a marketing strategy and managed by the Commission of Sustainable Tourism and entity of the High Authority of Tourism.

A high dynamic of investments

To facilitate access to financial resources, the State created the Moroccan Fund for Tourism Development (FMDT). Through a structural approach, this fund will help building investors' confidence and giving a boost to major projects brought by the Vision 2020. Meanwhile, bonuses will be provided to support tourism investment and direct it towards the less developed areas and the new opportunities of development.

Regarding transportation, the MNTO (Moroccan National Tourism Office) and the ADT (Tourism Development Agencies) deploy specific strategies in order to support air service and increase attraction of tourism areas.

In each area, centers of excellence for training will be created to ensure the adequacy between training offer and the expectations of the labor market. These centers will be a result of a partnership between the public and private sectors.