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Moroccan King Calls for ‘Fresh Blood’ to Boost Sluggish Economy

Moroccan King Calls for ‘Fresh Blood’ to Boost Sluggish Economy

King Mohammed VI

King Mohammed VI

Photographer: Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images 

King Mohammed VI

Photographer: Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images 

King Mohammed VI called for a review of Morocco’s growth model and a shake-up of government jobs as he said the $118 billion economy was struggling to meet the demands of all its citizens.

Prime Minister Saad-Eddine El Othmani should propose new appointees for the government and to head some public firms by fall, the king said late Monday in a televised address marking the 20th anniversary of his ascension to the North African nation’s throne.

“Fresh blood must be brought into political, economic and administrative institutions and entities including the government” to draft a new “generation of projects,” he said, urging rapid improvements in social services. The king said he will appoint a committee to review Morocco’s growth plans by the end of summer.

The monarch’s comments came the same day that central bank Governor Abdellatif Jouahri warned Morocco’s economy is grappling with rising social demands. The country, on the western edge of the Arab world, has largely avoided the political turmoil that’s rocked its regional neighbors since 2011.

The International Monetary Fund this month lowered its forecast for Moroccan economic growth to 3% in 2019 and cut its inflation estimate to 0.6% from 1.4%.