Opinion Poll 2017 – Morocco (factsheet)

December 14, 2017
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Moroccans lead the region in positive views about the EU, opinion poll finds

Almost three-quarters of all Moroccans have a positive image of the European Union – the highest proportion in any country of the southern Mediterranean region. Almost nine out of ten feel their country has good relations with the EU, 82% say the EU has a positive influence on development in their country, and 90% believe the EU’s financial support to Morocco is effective, just some of the findings of the latest annual opinion poll in Morocco, published by the EU Neighbours South project.

The survey – part of a wave of opinion polls carried out in seven southern Mediterranean partner countries – was conducted in Morocco from April-June 2017, with 1,020 people consulted in face-to-face interviews. Respondents were asked about their general perceptions of the EU and the values with which it is associated, about EU relations with their country, and the impact of EU financial support. The surveys also look at preferred sources of information, how people feel about their personal situation and the situation in their country, and their expectations for the future.

On all the questions, the poll found that Moroccans were by a long way the most positive about the EU out of all seven countries surveyed (Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia in the Maghreb, and four Mashrek countries Jordan, Lebanon, the Palestinian territories, and Israel).

Asked to describe Morocco’s relations with the EU, 87% said they were good, compared to an average of 76% in the Maghreb (64% Mashrek). Eighty-two per cent of those asked felt the EU had a positive influence on socio-economic development in Morocco (65% Maghreb average), while 90% of Moroccans felt EU financial support to their country was effective.

Almost three-quarters (74%) of Moroccans see the EU as an important partner, with which their country shares sufficient common values to cooperate (73%). Two-thirds said the EU brought peace and stability to their region.

In more general terms, 72% of those asked had a positive image of the EU, compared to the Maghreb average of 62% (44% in the Mashrek). As in other countries of the region, the values most frequently associated with the EU were human rights and equality between men and women, while those least associated with the EU were cited as freedom of religion and an absence of corruption.

Moroccans feel EU support has contributed the most to trade and tourism (36% each) in their country. They are keen for the EU to play an even greater role in the areas of trade (77%), economic development (72%), and migration (67%).

Television – both public and private – remains by far the main source of information for news in Morocco (cited by 57% and 44% of respondents respectively). Indeed, Morocco remains far more traditional in its media consumption than other countries in the region, with only 15% using the Internet for news (compared to an average of 31% in the Maghreb and 41% in the Mashrek), and 22% using social media (compared to 28% Maghreb average and 54% Mashrek) – fewer than rely on radio news (24%). Readership of the written press, however, is weak, with just 10% citing public press and 13% reading privately owned newspapers (compared to 34% and 32% per cent respectively in neighbouring Algeria).

Moroccans are generally satisfied with their lives (82%, above the regional average of 79%), and are also more optimistic for the next 12 months, with 61% expecting their life in general to be better (just 8% worse) and 52% expecting an improved economic situation in the country (16% worse).

The EU Neighbours South regional overview report and factsheets are available here.

To find out more about EU – Morocco cooperation and partnership, go here.