Rabat - As part of its efforts to combat inflation and high prices, Morocco's government seeks to exempt agricultural equipment and inputs from value-added tax (VAT), the country’s head of government has said.
Aziz Akhannouch made the statement earlier today during the government’s council meeting.
Exempt from the Value Added Tax are equipment for preserving plant health, animals and plants breeding equipment, as well as equipment imported and designated strictly for agricultural use.
In his opening remarks at the government council’s meeting, Akhannouch said that an important draft decree will be examined with the aim of protecting the national market, ensuring a steady supply of basic materials, and addressing fluctuations in the cost of agricultural products brought on by the nation's record-low rainfall.
He noted that the increase in agricultural prices was mostly caused by the severe drought that Morocco experienced as well as the high costs of imported agricultural inputs, particularly live animals and plant propagation and protection products.
The government’s goal is to provide a steady supply of agricultural products to the national market so as to ensure an adequate supply and mitigate the effects of high prices on citizens, Akhannouch stressed.
Morocco's 2022 agriculture campaign has been affected by the country's worst drought in over three decades, which has posed significant challenges to the country’s economy, agriculture, and food security.
The economy of the North African nation is particularly susceptible to weather and rainfall patterns due to its heavy reliance on agriculture, which accounts for around 10% of GDP and 30% of employment.
According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Drought Assessment report, the effect of drought on agriculture is impacting the food supply chain, with food price inflation increasing by 15% year on year in 2022.
Recent data from Morocco's central bank, Bank Al-Maghrib (BAM), indicates that the country's agricultural production remains insufficient, despite a considerable increase in rainfall volume in 2023 compared to previous year.