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Product Space Perspective on Structural Change in Morocco

Israel Osorio Rodarte () and Hans Lofgren

Review of Middle East Economics and Finance, 2016, vol. 12, issue 2, 175-200

Abstract: Drawing on international trade data, this paper uses the product space approach to analyze changes in Morocco’s goods exports in 1990–2010 and future export priorities. The level and moderate growth of Morocco’s gross domestic product match the predictions of product space analysis, informed by changes in the income potential of Morocco’s export basket, reflecting relatively strong capabilities in products with a relatively low potential to contribute to income growth and diversification. Morocco’s peripheral position in the product space points to the difficulty of diversification into more sophisticated products. Encouraging changes since 1990 include the development of a revealed comparative advantage in medium- and high-tech manufactures. However, the number of goods involved is relatively small and this transformation has not sufficed to raise per capita growth to the average for middle-income countries. Among sectors, high growth is likely for phosphate-based fertilizer exports. However, phosphates are hampered by low income and diversification potentials. Along with various other manufactured products, electronics and the automotive industry are promising sectors that may offer more lasting positive contributions. Beyond goods, policy makers should also consider the potential contributions of service exports, which in recent years have enjoyed rapid growth.

Keywords: structural change; product space; morocco; economic policy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2016
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DOI: 10.1515/rmeef-2016-0003

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