Morocco trade deficit falls 18.7% in 2015

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RABAT (Reuters) – Morocco’s trade deficit fell 18.7 percent to 152.27 billion dirhams ($15.43 billion) in 2015 compared with a year earlier, thanks to lower import costs and higher exports, the foreign exchange regulator said on Friday.

Energy imports fell by 28 percent from a year earlier to 66.84 billion dirhams, data showed. Wheat imports also fell 32.6 percent as the local harvest hit a record high last year.

Total imports fell 5.6 percent and total exports rose 6.7 percent from a year earlier to 214.27 billion dirhams, led by a 21 percent rise in auto exports and 16.3 percent hike in phosphate sales.

Exports covered 58.5 percent of imports for the first time in 10 years, the regulator said.

Tourism receipts dropped 1.4 percent to 58.51 billion dirhams, while remittances from the 4.5 million Moroccans living abroad rose 3 percent to 61.75 billion dirhams.

Foreign direct investment jumped 6.7 percent to 39 billion dirhams.

 

Figures are in billions of dirhams:

 

Jan-Dec Jan-Dec Jan-Nov

2015 2014 2015

EXPORTS 214.27 200.80 195.29

IMPORTS 366.53 388.08 335.32

BALANCE -152.27 -187.27 -140.02

MIGRANT

REMITTANCES 61.75 59.97 56.68

TOURISM

RECEIPTS 58.51 59.31 54.66

FOREIGN DIRECT

INVESTMENT 39.01 36.55 33.96

 

($1 = 9.8654 Moroccan dirham)

 

(Reporting by Aziz El Yaakoubi; Editing by Alison Williams)

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