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Economic growth expected to stand at 2.9% in 2019, Economy Minister

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Economic growth is expected to reach 2.9% in 2019, Economy and Finance Minister Mohamed Benchaaboun said on Tuesday in Rabat, noting that the growth rate of non-agricultural activities is expected to rise to 3.3% from 2.6% in 2018.

Benchaaboun stressed that national economic growth is supported by domestic demand and that control of the budget deficit will continue in 2019 to reach 3.5% against 3.7% in 2018, said Minister Delegate for Relations with Parliament and Civil Society, spokesperson for the government Mustapha El Khalfi in a press briefing at the end of the cabinet meeting.

The control of the budget deficit has been achieved despite the social measures taken in 2019, in particular the agreement resulting from the social dialogue with a total cost of over 14 billion dirhams, of which 6 billion dirhams for the year 2019, said Benchaaboun who also cited in this regard the expenses of the Subsidy Fund (18 billion dirhams).

Benchaaboun also pointed out that this budgetary control was possible to achieve in the context of the continuation of social programs implemented by the kingdom and which weigh heavily on the State budget, underlining the launch of the phase III of the National Initiative for Human Development (INDH) 2019-2023 for a total budget of 18 billion dirhams.

The Minister also highlighted the progress made in the implementation of the Anti Spatial Disparities Program and the Advanced Regionalisation Project, noting that budget allocations to the regions amounted to more than 3.6 billion dirhams.

Budget deficit was also controlled despite the economic efforts in favor of companies, especially after the decision to make 2019 the year of the settlement of State arrears' repayment in respect of VAT, in favor of companies estimated at 40 billion dirhams early 2019, he said.

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