Morocco’s Import Unit Value Increase by 17% in Fourth Quarter of 2022

Morocco’s High Commission for Planning (HCP) said on Monday that the import unit value index increased by 17% in the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to the same period in 2021.

A unit value import, export index is an index that measures the change in the average cost of imported and exported goods.

The upward trend is primarily due to increases in imports of energy and lubricants by 33.2%, semi-finished goods by 24.8%, and food, drink, and tobacco by 19.6%.

Additionally, finished consumer goods imports increased by 9.0%, and finished industrial equipment by 6.4%.

Imports of raw animal and vegetable products increased by 18.6%, while finished agriculture equipment went up nearly 20%.

For the export unit value index, HCP reported an increase of 10.7% in the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to the same period in 2021.

The growth is attributed to the increase in exports of semi-finished products by 8.1%, finished industrial equipment by 37.6%, and raw mineral products by 40.8%.

Exports of animal and vegetable products increased by 19.4%, while those of energy and lubricants increased by 10.5%.

HCP data found that foreign trade unit value indexes recorded a 25.0% increase in imports and a 21.2% increase in exports year-on year.

In January, Morocco’s Exchange Office (OE) reported that the country’s trade deficit rose by 10% while food imports increased by 4%, or MAD 287 million ($28 million).

Food prices have reached all-time highs in 2022, posing new challenges for global food security, particularly for people in developing countries who rely heavily on imports.

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) Food Price Index averaged 159.3 points in March, up 12.6 percent from February, when it had already reached its highest level since its inception in 1990.

in light of the current world economic crisis, which negatively affected Morocco and caused a rise in commodity prices. King Mohammed VI emphasized the urgent need for the country to achieve sovereignty and become less reliant on imports.

“Our industry is called upon today, more than ever, to promote local production in a competitive manner in order to reduce this dependence, enhance our resilience, increase our competitiveness, and consolidate Morocco’s position in promising sectors,” the monarch said in a message addressed to participants of the first edition of the “National Industry Day.”

Morocco has similarly had to reduce its exports of certain essential food products so that it can meet domestic demand and bring prices down for the consumers. The impact of the export reduction on the unit value import, export index is yet to be seen.

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