Morocco's real GDP growth retreated to 2.7% in 2012 from 5.0% the year before as agriculture output fell sharply due to a weak harvest and non-agriculture contribution came less than expected, the High Council Planning said in a preliminary estimate. The reading undershot the IMF’s recent GDP growth estimate of 3.0%. In nominal terms, Morocco’s GDP rose 3.2% last year to MAD 828.2bn (USD 97bn). The country's economic growth should quicken to 4.5% in 2013, the IMF said in its latest World Economic Outlook published in April.
The value-added agriculture output contracted by 8.9% in 2012 compared with a 5.6% growth a year earlier, the HCP said. The agriculture sector employs some 40% of Morocco’s labour force. Excluding agriculture, Morocco's export-oriented economy remained relatively strong, rising 4.4% in 2012, down from 5.2% the year before.
The GDP growth will speed up to 4.8% y/y in 2013, underpinned by better agriculture output, reviving external demand and lower oil prices, the High Council Planning has recently said. The value-added agriculture output will expand by 6.1% in 2013 due to an expected better harvest season. The forecast is based on expected harvest of 7mn tons, an average USD 99.7 per barrel oil price, down from USD 105 in 2012 and a 2% GDP growth in the Eurozone, Morocco’s largest trade partner.
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