Gas Prices in Morocco: Questioning the Indexation Measure

Gas Prices in Morocco: Questioning the Indexation Measure


RABAT, MOROCCO- On the sidelines of the Moroccan Ministry of General Affairs and Governance announcing last weekend a decrease in the “fuel no. 2” and the “special fuel” products, which are mainly used for generating electricity, a witnessed stagnation and even an increase in the prices of  gasoline and the “premium fuel,” with respective prices at 9,69 and 12,05, has triggered a number of questions concerning the “governance system” and last year’s adopted Indexation Measure, which so-calledly links gas prices in Morocco to any increase or decrease in crude oil prices in the international market.

The indexation system introduced in 2013 by the current Moroccan government was an interesting initiative since it could link to an almost “real time” change in the oil prices, as the prices are recalculated almost fortnightly. However, oil prices in Morocco have shown a stagnation, and even a small increase during last months while the international crude oil prices are experiencing a continuous sharp decrease that went from more than 114$ in late June to less than 79$ in mid November for the brent Crude Oil barrel.

On the sidelines of this plummeting of oil prices on the international niveau, a number of Moroccan citizens, who are fully aware of these drastic drops, are rising their eyebrows at the current scenario as they were expecting a logical decrease in all prices of oil products. The question to be asked here is if this stagnation is part of the Moroccan government baby-steps retreat from subsidizing oil products in the traditional Soundouk Al-Makassa (Compensation System), which [Compensation System] was aimed in the first place at providing an affordable price for the poor people to allow them  afford basic food products (such as sugar, milk).

The recent oil prices announced last weekend need more clarification from the government, or at least from the oil professionals at the Moroccan Ministry of Economy or the Moroccan Ministry of Governance so that Moroccans could fathom the current situation, especially that according to the International Energy Agency, oil prices are likely to continue plummeting for the next months, and well into 2015.

One of the positive points that characterizes the current government is its communication, and we, as Moroccans, rely on this point for more clarification.

Omar Benkirane.