Morocco Faces the Coronavirus

On Tuesday, the Moroccan Government announced their current COVID-19 stats. Approximately 1,120 people have been confirmed to have contracted the disease. 80 lives have been lost.

The number of confirmed cases is suspected to dramatically rise in the following weeks, after the government ordered a substantial number of Coronavirus testing kits from China and South Korea. These kits will make for a more aggressive testing regime that will likely expose hidden cases throughout the population. 

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As the numbers continue to rise, the Moroccan Government also announced a new measure: anyone seen in public without a face mask will risk facing jail time. This decision was announced on Tuesday, along with the confirmed number of cases and the rising death toll.


Following their announcement, the government has pledged to double the number of protective masks that are currently being produced daily. An average of 3.3 million masks are being made in Moroccan factories. However, by next week, the government’s goal is to produce 6 million masks on a daily basis. In an effort to make masks assessable to the entire population, the protective gear will be sold at 0.82 dirhams (0.08 USD or 0.073 euros).

This new law has followed a series of other measures set in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Measures to prevent the spread of Coronavirus

On Sunday, King Mohammed VI pardoned a total of 5,654 prisoners, all of whom were released from prison. The king’s pardon was part of the effort to stop the spread of the disease in the overcrowded prison population. However, the prisoners that King Mohammed VI pardoned had to meet specific requirements, requirements based on age, good conduct, heath and length of their prison sentence.

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On Friday, the Moroccan finance ministry pledged to spend 2 billion dirhams (2 million USD or 1.8 million euros) to support the health care system. This money will be spent on intensive care beds, ventilators and testing kits. The government’s Cabinet hopes to increase the number of intensive care unit beds from 1,640 to 3,000 beds.

An additional 1 billion dirhams (9.7 million USD or 8.9 million euros) have been put aside in a special fund for the Moroccan COVID-19 response.

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This money will be spent in varying ways. From the fund, financial stipends of 800 dirhams to 1,200 dirhams will be awarded to the heads of all households, whose activity has been impacted by the spread of the disease and the Moroccan lockdown. Also coming from this 1-billion-dirham fund will be other stipends for members of the population, who lost their jobs because of the virus. These Moroccans will receive 2,000 dirhams monthly, until June.

These measures have evolved, since 13 March, when King Mohammed VI sealed the Moroccan borders and suspended all flights to China. Only three days after the king’s initial attempt to keep the virus out of Morocco, all flights were suspended, and mosques throughout the country were closed.

Marocco goes in lockdown

By 20 March, the king’s preventative measures grew drastically, and the entire country went into lockdown. This lockdown was strictly enforced by police and military officers. The Moroccan lockdown reflected many lockdown’s around the world. People were only allowed to leave their homes for food and medical supplies.

Anyone who left their home for work was required to carry a permit, which gave them immunity to police integrations and potential arrest. All companies were ordered to stop the hiring and promotion processes. The only sectors allowed to continue on with hiring employees were any businesses in the medical field and security industry. Similar to the newly required face mask law, anybody that broke the lockdown procedures were ordered to be detained and arrested.