WASHINGTON (March 16, 2023) – The U.S. government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) and the Government of the Kingdom of Morocco celebrated the closure of the $460.5 million Employability and Land Compact today, marking the end of a 5-year grant that expanded education and employment opportunities and improved land productivity benefiting hundreds of thousands of Moroccans and strengthening the U.S.-Morocco commitment to support sustainable economic growth.
The MCC-Morocco partnership, going back more than 15 years, has provided a critical step forward for the country’s economic growth and development and speaks to the mutual friendship between Morocco and the United States.
MCC’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Alice Albright joined Honorable Prime Minister Aziz Akhannouch in Rabat for a closeout ceremony, celebrating MCC’s partnership with the Government of Morocco and the achievements this program had on the country’s education and land sectors.
“Today, we celebrate another milestone in the United States’ centuries-long friendship with the people of Morocco,” said CEO Albright. “Working together, the compact advances economic growth in Morocco by building and reforming the education and land sectors to meet the private sector’s growing demand for skilled employees and to increase the productivity of rural and industrial land zones. We expect the compact will improve the lives of over 800,000 Moroccans.”
The Morocco Employability and Land Compact created inclusive and innovative economic opportunities that better respond to private sector and investor needs.
Head of Government Akhannouch stressed that the second compact represents another example of the strategic partnership between the Kingdom of Morocco and the United States, serving as a lever for development and for the upgrading of infrastructure in key sectors in the country, as well as supporting Morocco’s institutional and structural reforms, under the leadership of His Majesty King Mohammed VI.
Education and Human Capital Improvements
A well-educated, highly skilled workforce is foundational to nurturing responsive, thriving, and resilient economies. Through the compact, MCC and the Government of Morocco:
- Strengthened secondary school management, promoting student-centered learning, and improving the physical learning environment. Reaching 90 schools across three regions of Morocco, approximately 550,000 students will benefit over the next 20 years.
- Launched a learning management mobile application that allows students, parents, teachers, and administrators access to real-time data on grades, attendance, homework, and lessons plans.
- Began construction of 15 Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) centers and provided training under a results-based financing model at job placement agencies to incentivize job placement and retention, especially for vulnerable women and youth. As of December 2022, 5,062 Moroccans have received job placement services, including 3,650 women.
Land Productivity Improvements
The MCC-Morocco compact helped pave the way for more private sector investment and increased land ownership for women. By improving land productivity and land rights, this program:
- Invested and expanded 11 industrial zones across the country, attracting private investment and leading Morocco’s Ministry of Industry and Trade to pledge an additional $15 million to continue the success of the project.
- Established the Bouznika Park Industries Public-Private Partnership (PPP), the country’s first industrial PPP park, in Casablanca that is estimated to attract an additional $75 million in investments from companies occupying the park and will result in the creation of 4,000 jobs.
- Granted formal titles for over 37,000 hectares of land, with women comprising more than 40% of title holders. In total, at least 48,000 small-scale farmers and their families are expected to benefit from the program.
- Launched the Center for Women’s Land Tenure, in partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture, to support the collection of data related to women’s access to land and their participation in land governance. The Center will also raise public awareness on issues related to women’s land rights.
MCC’s prior compact in Morocco, which concluded in 2013, modernized sectors such as agribusiness, fishing, and handicrafts. Over the past decade, MCC has invested more than $1.1 billion in Morocco to strengthen key sectors in the economy and to build needed infrastructure.
The Millennium Challenge Corporation is an independent U.S. government agency working to reduce global poverty through economic growth. Created in 2004, MCC provides time-limited grants and assistance to countries that meet rigorous standards for good governance, fighting corruption and respecting democratic rights.