Moroccan king lays out plan to tackle development and social inequalities

The 55-year old king enumerated some key achievements of his rule, with an emphasis on infrastructure developments

This handout picture provided by the Moroccan Royal Palace on July 29, 2019 shows Morocco's King Mohammed VI (C) delivering a speech marking the 20th anniversary of his accession to the throne, with his brother Prince Moulay Rachid (R) and son Prince Moulay Hassan (L) seated alongside him, in the northern city of Tetouan overlooking the Mediterranean. == RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /HO/ MOROCCAN ROYAL PALACE" - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS ==
 / AFP / MAP / - / == RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /HO/ MOROCCAN ROYAL PALACE" - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS ==
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

King Mohammed VI of Morocco laid out a plan to tackle development and social inequalities while urging a government reshuffle in a speech on Monday.

The committee will serve as an advisory body to make suggestions to improve reforms in fields such as education, health, agriculture, investment and taxation, said the monarch in a speech marking twenty years of his rule.

The 55-year old king enumerated some key achievements of his rule, with emphasis on infrastructure developments such as highways, high-speed railway, ports, renewable energy and urban development.

"What undermines this positive result is that the effects of the progress and the achievements made has not, unfortunately, been felt by all segments of the Moroccan society", he said.

He paid special emphasis to the need to open up the economy to foreign investors and revamp the public sector.

Such projects and reforms require new leaders in decision-making positions, he said.

"I ask the head of government to submit to me, after the summer break, proposals to fill executive posts in the government and the civil service with high-level national elites chosen on merit and competence", he said.

The king also reiterated his "policy of the outstretched hand toward Algeria", invoking the "brotherhood" and "joy" expressed in Morocco after the Algerian team won the African Cup of Nations.

Shared borders have been closed between the two North African neighbours since 1994.

The two countries are at loggerheads over a set of issues including the Western Sahara, a disputed territory considered by Morocco as an integral part of its sovereign lands, but also claimed by the Algerian-backed Polisario Front.

Morocco has largely been insulated from the turmoil that hit North Africa and the Middle East since the Arab uprisings of 2011, although it regularly sees protests over economic and social problems.

The monarchy, under pressure from protesters, in a 2011 constitutional referendum delegated some of its powers to an elected government.

EDITOR'S PICKS
NEWSLETTERS
MORE FROM THE NATIONAL