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Morocco at a Glance
- Currency: Moroccan Dirham, MAD (درهم)
- Population: 36.74 million
- Economy/GDP: $259.42 billion (60th largest)
- Top Sectors: Automotive manufacturing, construction, energy, mining, aerospace, textiles, leather goods, agriculture and food processing, and tourism.
- Ease of Doing Business: Ranks 53 in the world, according to the World Bank’s latest Doing Business report from 2019
- Languages: The official and most widely spoken language in Morocco is Arabic. However, French is often used as the language for business, government, and diplomacy. Additionally, the heaviest concentration of Berber languages, a branch of the Afroasiatic language family, is found in Morocco. Morocco has a low proficiency in English as it’s ranked 71st in speaking English as a second language, according to Education First’s English Proficiency Index, which analyzes data from 2.2 million non-native English speakers in 100 countries.
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Grow Your Team in Morocco
Velocity Global simplifies expanding into Morocco with our Employer of Record (EoR). By partnering with an employer of record in Morocco you don’t need to establish an entity in Morocco to grow your business. Instead, we expedite the international employee onboarding process, payroll, compliance, and risk mitigation through our solutions.
Our streamlined method accelerates your business’ international development compared to entity setup. Velocity Global hires candidates on your behalf in compliance with local labor laws to ensure a quick, simplified employment experience.
Accelerate your international business growth with a trusted expert. If you would like to learn more about Velocity Global’s Morocco Employer of Record, connect with us.
Benefits of hiring in Morocco
- Morocco is the fifth-largest economy in Africa and the third-largest in the northern regions of the continent. It’s the leading recipient of foreign direct investment from the Maghreb region in Africa.
- Morocco is a country with a strategic position in the world for international business. It opens the door to commerce entering the Mediterranean Sea and the countries surrounded by it. Likewise, it serves as a gateway to sub-Saharan Africa, as the Maghreb region facilitates entry for large corporations. At the same time, it is the only country in the region that serves as the main gateway to the Americas.
- Morocco’s political system makes it a relevant business partner as its monarchy has implemented social and political reforms, which have resulted in economic stability that surrounding countries do not possess. The monarchy has succeeded in obtaining large amounts of direct foreign investments. Correspondingly, a number of well-known companies have established themselves in the region.
- The country has significantly improved its infrastructure, especially its mobile phone market, which has increased internet access and the capacity and quality of its seaports. This all provides a strong foundation for international recognition of its increased economic openness.
Challenges of hiring in Morocco
- Morocco’s economy continues to remain highly dependent on the performance of its agriculture sector. As climate and water availability become unsteady and undependable, the country’s economy is left vulnerable.
- The country’s high unemployment rate persists, particularly among young people. Furthermore, there is a low participation rate of women in the labor market.
- Morocco has notable regional disparities between urban and rural areas, with recurring discontent in certain communities. The poverty rate remains high, due to these disparities.
Cultural nuances and must-knows of doing business in Morocco
- While finding French-influenced business culture in Morocco, the country is still largely an Arabic-speaking Muslim country. Moroccan culture is a mixture of Arabic, Berber, Muslim, and French cultures. Accordingly, sage advice offers practicing cultural sensitivity.
- Business meetings are usually formal and colleagues dress as such. Meetings need to be scheduled so as not to coincide with prayer times.
- Greeting Moroccan colleagues depends upon gender. Colleagues of the same gender may shake hands or gently kiss on the cheek. Colleagues from different genders may prefer not to touch; a smile and a light head nod are appreciated.
- Business culture in Morocco is strongly hierarchical and depends on stratified relationships and professional rankings. Decision-making is centralized at the top of the hierarchy.
- Building personal relationships with colleagues is necessary before collaborating and reaching a business agreement. Referrals from personal networks most often facilitate negotiations and business processes.
Wages and Salaries in Morocco
Minimum wage and salaries in Morocco
- Effective May 1, 2022, the Moroccan government has increased the minimum wage for both the public and private sectors. The minimum wages in Morocco are increased to MAD3,500 per month for the public sector and MAD2,902 per month for the private sector.
Probation period in Morocco
- Probation periods in Morocco are dependent upon the type of employment contract.
- For indefinite-term contracts:
- The probation period is set to three months for executive positions.
- The probation period is set to a month and a half for office employees.
- The probation period is set to 15 days for on-site laborers.
- The probation period can be renewed once.
- For fixed-term contracts:
- The probation period is set to one day per work week up to a maximum of two weeks if the contract’s duration is less than six months.
- The probation period is set to one month if the contract’s duration is more than six months.
Bonus payment in Morocco
- There are no legal requirements in Morocco regarding bonuses. However, it is common practice for employers to pay 13th-month bonuses or seniority bonuses to employees.
Onboarding in Morocco
- In Morocco, a written employment agreement or contract is not mandatory by law. However, employers must provide employees with a job card that mentions the following:
- Employer’s name
- Employee’s name
- Employee’s position
- Employee’s social security number
- Where there is a written employment contract, it’s advised that the signatures of the employer and employee be certified by the relevant authorities, such as the local municipality, otherwise, its validity can be legally challenged.
Termination and notice period in Morocco
- In Morocco, termination and notice periods are dependent upon the type of employment contract.
- Termination of a fixed-term employment contract is validated by a just cause of:
- A serious breach of contract
- Disciplinary measures
- A force majeure event
- Employees are entitled to a severance payment when termination of their fixed-term employment contract is not legitimized by just cause. This payment is equal to the wages otherwise payable to the employee until the contract’s expiration.
- Termination of an indefinite-term employment contract, unless legitimized by just cause, must allow for a notice period or a payment in lieu of notice. The duration is one to three months for employment of less than five years.
- Unless legitimized by just cause, termination of an indefinite-term contract by an employer gives the employee eligibility for a severance payment of:
- 96 hours of wages for each year, or portion of a year, for the first five years of employment
- 144 hours of salary for each year, or portion of a year, from the sixth to the tenth year of employment
- 192 hours of salary for each year, or portion of a year, from the 11th to the 15th year of employment
- 240 hours of salary for each year, or portion of a year, above 15 years of employment
Leave Entitlements in Morocco
Annual leave in Morocco
- Under Article 231 of the Moroccon Labor Code, employees aged 18 and over are entitled to 1.5 days of paid leave per month up to 18 days of paid leave per year of service. Employees under the age of 18 are eligible for two days of paid leave per month up to 24 days of paid leave per year of service.
Parental and maternity leave in Morocco
- Pregnant employees in Morocco are entitled to 14 weeks of paid maternity leave, with a mandatory leave period of seven consecutive weeks following childbirth. Maternity leave is paid at 100% of the employee’s average salary during the six months before childbirth.
- Employees are entitled to three days of paid paternity leave. However, the three days don’t need to be continuous. They must be taken within one month after childbirth.
Sick leave in Morocco
- The Moroccan labor code designates four days for sick leave. If the sick leave extends longer than four days, employees must notify their employers of the probable length of the leave and provide a medical certificate to justify it. If the absence due to illness or injury extends beyond 180 consecutive days, employers can consider the employee to have resigned. Sick leave is paid by Morocco’s National Social Security Fund.
Regional and national holidays in Morocco
- Morocco has 13 public holidays in a calendar year. The holidays are not included in the minimum paid leave entitlement and they are taken in addition to annual leave. The following are national holidays in Morocco:
- New Year’s Day (January 1)
- Independence Manifesto Day (January 11)
- Labor Day (May 1)
- Eid al-Fitr/The end of Ramadan (March, April, or May, the specific day fluctuates each year)
- Eid al-Adha/Feast of Abraham’s Sacrifice (May or June, the specific day fluctuates each year)
- Islamic New Year (June or July, the specific day fluctuates each year)
- Throne Day (July 30)
- Oued Ed-Dahab Day (August 14)
- Revolution Day (August 20)
- Birthday of King Mohammed VI/Youth Day (August 21)
- Prophet Muhammad’s Birthday (August, September, or October, the specific day fluctuates each year)
- Green March Day (November 6)
- Independence Day (November 18)
Employment Benefits in Morocco
- Morocco’s government benefits programs are administered by the Caisse Nationale de Sécurité Sociale (National Social Security Fund). The state’s social security agency was founded in 1959 and is responsible for providing social security services to Moroccan society. The agency collects contributions from employers and employees to maintain the Moroccan Social Security scheme, which maintains pensions, survivor benefits, short-term disability, long-term disability, healthcare, and paid leave entitlements.
Tax and Social Security in Morocco
- Individuals are considered Moroccan tax residents when either:
- They have a habitual residence in Morocco
- Their economic interests are centered in Morocco
- They stay in Morocco for more than 183 days within any given 365-day period
- Moroccan tax residents face taxes on their worldwide income. Non-tax residents are taxed only on Morocco-source income.
Tax thresholds in Morocco
- As of 2022, the Moroccan individual income tax brackets are:
- Up to MAD 30,000: 0%
- MAD 30,001 – MAD 50,000: 10%
- MAD 50,001 – MAD 60,000: 20%
- MAD 60,001 – MAD 80,000: 30%
- MAD 80,001 – MAD 180,000: 34%
- Above MAD 180,000: 38%
- As of 2022, the Moroccan corporate tax rate brackets are:
- Up to MAD 300,000: 10%
- MAD 300,001 – MAD 1,000,000: 20%
- Above MAD 1,000,000: 31%
Health insurance in Morocco
- According to the United States International Trade Administration, the Moroccan government is the primary healthcare provider in Morocco with 85% of supply provided by public hospitals and 15% by private health centers.
- During the course of the Arab Spring in 2011, Morocco adopted a new constitution addressing health in several different articles. Article 31 gives the right to universal access to health services and Article 154 gives the right to quality health services.
- Most Moroccan residents have healthcare coverage through the primary source of health insurance: the Mandatory Health Insurance, L’Assurance Maladie Obligatoire (AMO). AMO, the payroll-based health insurance system, covers the costs of general medical appointments, surgical operations, childbirth and postnatal care, laboratory tests, oral health treatment, and paramedics.
Pension in Morocco
- Employees in Morocco are subject to eligibility requirements for the state’s old-age retirement pension. The requirements are as follows:
- Employees must be at least 60 years old with at least 3,240 days of contributions to the National Social Security Fund.
- The state’s old-age retirement pension is 50% of the employee’s average monthly covered earnings in the last 96 months. Additionally, employees receive 1% of their average monthly covered earnings for every 216 days of coverage exceeding 3,240 days. The maximum monthly old-age pension is 70% of the employee’s average monthly earnings. The minimum monthly old-age pension is MAD 1,000.
Payroll in Morocco
- An employer of record in Morocco helps accelerate and simplify all payroll-related tasks.
Tax due dates in Morocco
- In Morocco, individual income tax is paid by withholdings made by resident employers. Individual income tax is not required for employees employed by one Moroccan resident entity and earning only employment income. For employees earning income from a non-resident entity or from several employers, filing a tax return by February 28 is required.
Payroll cycle in Morocco
- The payroll cycle in Morocco is generally monthly, where payments are made on the last working day of the month.
Average working hours in Morocco
- Typical working hours are 44 hours per week or 2,288 per year, with a maximum of 10 hours per day.
Overtime in Morocco
- The time worked beyond an employee’s normal hours is considered overtime. If overtime is performed between 6 a.m. and 9 p.m., wages are increased by 25%. If overtime is performed between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m., wages are increased by 50%. If overtime is required on a weekend or rest day, wages are increased by 50% or 100% of the regular pay rate, depending on the employee’s contract.
Why Work in Morocco?
Morocco is located in the northwestern corner of Africa, just across the Strait of Gibraltar on Europe’s Iberian Peninsula. Morocco has coastlines in the North Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. Morocco is the size of the US state of California, and the country has been under the rule of independent dynasties since its founding in 788 AD.
Morocco has engendered itself as an attractive economy in the northern African region. The country has the fifth-largest economy on the continent and it remains the northern region’s leading recipient of direct foreign investment. Morocco’s strategic location, as a gateway to different parts of the world, gives it power as an international business partner, especially in its top sectors. Given the richness of Moroccan soil, its economy is dominated by its natural resource sectors, such as agriculture and mining chemical compounds.
Individuals searching to work and live in Morocco can look forward to an inexpensive cost of living, warm hospitality, rich history and traditions, and a delectable cuisine. Moroccans share cultural values with a heavy emphasis on family, honor, unity, and a calm disposition.
The climate in Morocco varies by location. Along the coast, most of the country experiences a Mediterranean climate with dry, hot summers and mild, wet winters. The rainy season usually occurs from November through March, whereas the southern region of the country remains drier throughout the year. A continental climate is located in the mountain region and a desert climate is positioned in inland areas.
Morocco offers its residents and visitors a vibrant culture and dense history. Morocco is world-famous for its beautiful architecture from its ancient palaces and mosques, to its bustling historical Medinas and its traditional bath house spas called Hammams. The country is well-known for its natural beauty and rich heritage. The country has the Atlas mountains, the Sahara desert, and incredibly diverse coasts including luxury beaches, surfing beaches, and wild beaches. Morocco is home to the world’s first university, eight UNESCO World Heritage sites, and the highest ski resort on the African continent. From Morocco’s famous cities of Casablanca to Marrakesh, to the country’s rural areas, there is immense natural beauty and architecture that millions of travelers come to see year-round.
The best way to get around Morocco is via shared so-called grand taxis. They are quicker than buses and trains and they operate on a wider variety of routes. Fares vary slightly more than the bus. Morocco’s public transit network is far-reaching as it includes collective taxis, bus, and rail, which covers most of the country. Morocco’s location makes it a hub to simply travel around the northern African region and across the Mediterranean.
Morocco is revered for its history, architecture, and welcoming community. If you’re exploring options for a place to expand your business in northern Africa, Morocco is a notable consideration.