IEA lauds Morocco’s energy policy efforts

Image: International Energy Agency

The International Energy Agency (IEA) published on Tuesday an extensive report covering Morocco’s reforms aiming to promote sustainable development in the national energy sector.

According to the report, the agency has noted the government’s positive efforts to boost renewable investment, provide access to electricity, and phase out of subsidies for fossil fuel consumption. With the exception of bottled butane, fuel prices are now linked to the international market.

Furthermore, Morocco is undergoing an ambitious energy transition program, in line with the country’s commitments to the Paris Agreement. For now, the country’s energy mix relies heavily on fossil fuels. Oil, gas and coal imports account for 90 percent of its energy needs. Coal alone provides 54 percent of the country’s power generation. The report emphasises the importance of increased private and public investments and the maintenance of momentum when it comes to major reforms.

An array of reforms and projects have put Morocco in the spotlight of energy transition: Ouarzazate is home to the world’s largest solar power park; the government is creating a national electricity regulatory authority, creating new interconnections with Europe, namely Spain and Portugal, while simultaneously planning to boost power trading and create synergies to develop a regional electricity market. Furthermore, Morocco is tackling the challenge of energy efficiency by implementing a National Energy Efficiency Strategy.

Following a first edition in 2014, Fatih Birol, Executive Director of IEA, presented the report to Aziz Rabbah, Moroccan Minister of Energy in Rabat, Morocco. The country is one of the agency’s eight association countries. IEA’s association program aims to enhance inter-country collaboration on energy issues such as energy security, energy data and statistics, and energy policy analysis.

“I am very pleased to count Morocco as a member of the IEA Family,” said Dr. Birol. “It was the first country in the Middle East and North Africa to join us. Morocco’s success in moving towards universal access and phasing out fossil fuel subsidies is a role model for many countries, making it an ideal partner to host regional training and capacity building programmes that help to improve energy policymaking across Africa.”