Rabat – In the face of a global economic slowdown and unprecedented inflationary pressures, Morocco’s banking sector has remained “resilient,” according to an annual report on the banking sector from the country’s central bank, Bank Al-Maghrib (BAM).
In the report, BAM explains that 2022 was marked by a deceleration in economic growth and a significant surge in inflation on a global scale.
Responding to the market conditions, BAM raised its benchmark interest rate three times, resulting in a total increase of 150 basis points to 3%. The move aimed to stabilize inflation, ensuring price stability within the Moroccan economy.
BAM further explained that credit demand surged by 6.5%, driven by businesses seeking financing to cope with rising prices of energy and raw materials. However, credits to households experienced a deceleration during the same period, reflecting changes in consumer behavior.
The report revealed that while the banking system’s results saw a decline of 13% on a social basis in 2022, this was primarily due to the impact of changing interest rate conditions on the valuation of securities portfolios held by banks.
However, the resilience of Morocco’s banking sector became evident through the strong performances of the international operations of banking groups, resulting in a 15% increase in their consolidated results.
The report highlighted Bank Al-Maghrib’s active role in combating money laundering and the financing of terrorism.
The collaborative efforts with public and private stakeholders resulted in Morocco’s removal from the “grey list” maintained by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) in early 2023, underscoring the country’s commitment to maintaining a secure and stable financial system.
Bank Al-Maghrib has also contributed to the digitization of banking services. The central bank worked with banks to implement an online authentication and identification system and enact regulatory texts for cloud computing, mobile payment, and crowdfunding that have enhanced the sector’s efficiency.
Source : MoroccoWorldNews