Definition of Youth

In statistical data produced by the Ministry of Youth and Sports, youth was defined as between 15-29 years.


Marriageable Age

  • Opposite Sex
  • Same Sex
  • Without parental consent
  • with parental consent
  • Male
  • 18
  • --
  • XX
  • Female
  • 18
  • --
  • XX

  • No data for marriage with parental consent. Homosexual acts illegal. Source: UNSD, ILGA

Candidacy Age

Criminal Responsibility

Minimum Age
Source:  Morocco Penal Code

Majority Age


Source: Moroccan Family Code (2004)

Voting Age


Situation of Young People

Literacy Rates

Both sexes (15-24) %
  • 90.10% Male (15-24) %
  • 75.87% Female (15-24) %

Net Enrolment Rate

Secondary School
Both sexes %
  • --Male %
  • -- Female %
  • Year: No data.
  • Source: UNESCO

Situation of Young People

Prevalence of HIV

Male (15-24) %
Female (15-24) %

Tobacco Use

Consumed any smokeless or smoking tobacco product at least once 30 days prior to the survey.
Both sexes (13-15) %
  • 12.50% Male (13-15) %
  • 8.20% Female (13-15) %
  • Year: 2010
  • Source: WHO

Policy & Legislation

Is there a national youth policy?
Morocco has a national youth policy, which is being overhauled. A 2009 study and 2012 report exist.

The New National Youth Policy (NPNJ) was adopted in 2003, according to a 2009 Euromed study. Described as the “framework of a global plan for young people”, it focuses on youth, childhood and females, and includes action plans against social insecurity and exclusion.   As described in a 2012 World Bank report, Morocco also has a national integrated youth strategy (SNIJ) that seeks to expand the country’s network of youth services, which include extra-curricular activities promoting social inclusion, ICT access and employment training. According to the Council of Europe Neighbourhood Co-operation Priorities for Morocco 2012-2014, SNIJ was in its final validation stage in April 2012. At the time of publication, neither the NPNJ nor the SNIJ are featured on the Ministry of Youth and Sport website.

Public Institutions

Is there a governmental authority
(ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth?
The Ministry of Youth and Sports (MoYS) is responsible for developing and implementing policy relating to youth, sports, the protection of children and the advancement of women. Its tasks include: developing socio-education programmes that ensure the protection of youth, children and women; promoting regional and international cooperation in the field of youth and children, and; preparing and supporting research. The MoYS is responsible for developing and setting policy, while provincial and prefectural offices are responsible for its implementation.

Youth and Representation

Does the country have a national youth organisation / association (council, platform, body)?
35,000 young people participated in a nation-wide consultation to discuss the formation of a new national consultative council (youth council), as reported in Magharebia in September 2012. According to Nadia Rabbaa in Arab News on 21 July 2012, the new council was created under the 2011 Moroccan Constitution, drafted in response to the popular protests of the same year. Several international organisations and governments are providing technical assistance for its creation, including the British Youth Council, the Council of Europe and USAID, however there is no indication that the council has formally convened.

Budget & Spending

What is the budget allocated to the governmental authority (ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth and/or youth programming?
MAD 870 million
USD 107 million
According to the 2013 General Budget Expenditure (by Department), the Ministry of Youth and Sport had a budget expenditure of MAD 870 million (USD 107 million). According to the World Bank, Morocco spent 25.71% of its government expenditure on education provision in 2008, and 5.38% of its GDP in 2009.
Total Expenditure on Education as a Percentage of Government Spending and GDP

  • % of GDP
  • % of gov. expenditure

Source: World Bank
Gaps indicate missing data from the original data source. (Accessed August 2013).

Additional Background

From Studies on Youth Policies in the Mediterranean Partner Countries: Morocco (2009):  
The Moroccan youth is often broken off from the adult world and has difficulty in finding its place in society. In the previous generation, young people were a productive force in the family ranks. Today, these young people, most particularly in urban areas, have become « a burden » that disturbs representations and traditions between generations.
Moroccan youth, especially the urban population, is very much in tune with communication and information technologies. During interviews with urban youth, 95% of young people considered computer and Internet use to be their main occupation of free time, either at home, or more often in “cybercafés” that promote a friendly, social space and allow one to be “connected to the entire world” as expressed by a young person from Rabat. This also allows Moroccan youth to be in step with global youth trends, particularly such as music, rap, and hip hop for rural youth. If computer use is spreading in rural areas, it is largely due to the presence of cultured youth in villages or emigrants returning home to set up associations, to participate in the municipal council, or to contribute to the introduction of collective “modern” activities with the establishment of daily Internet use.
The experiments, however, remain unequally based on territorial distribution, and there is today a “digital gap” between rural and urban youth regarding usage of information technologies. However, football, for boys, deserves the title of “national past time”, far more than cultural hobbies, which represent only 12% of those mentioned during the interviews. [...]
Due to the personal status reform, the legal age of marriage increased from 15 to 18 years old for women, and it remains at 18 years old for men. Polygamy remains legal, but it is allowed only under two conditions. It must be authorized by a judge and accepted by both (or several) spouses. It is today undergoing a distinct regression. Concerning education, it is now compulsory for children from 6 to 14 years of age, but without official control. The legal age of majority and criminal responsibility has increased to 18 years of age. Military service is no longer compulsory. There is, furthermore, a specific form of justice for minors. A youth judge must organise their placement in one of the 22 reform centres spread throughout the country. Through articles 476 and 500 of the code of civil procedure, the delegate in charge of youth probation, who is a government official from the State Bureau in charge of youth, ensures that youth are monitored under the supervision of a judge for minors. This supervision occurs in two phases. The first involves observation of the minor, his family, and his environment. The second is a reform of the minor’s behaviour through either probation or a stay in a rehabilitation centre.
  From Kingdom of Morocco: Promoting Youth Opportunities and Participation (2012):  
Young men and women who do have work widely report holding poor-quality jobs, often working without job security or benefits (about 88% of employed youth work without a contract, meaning that most have informal sector jobs), experiencing underemployment (especially in the informal sector, where many jobs are temporary or part-time), and poor working conditions.
Overall, youth in Morocco report being dissatisfied with their jobs and recount many problems with them—the most widely cited are the low pay, heavy workloads, long hours, and boredom.
Private versus Public sector Jobs: Approximately 50% of youth are salaried workers in private companies. The importance of the public sector as a source of jobs has declined. Only 5% of youth have public sector salaried positions. Despite the interest expressed by young survey respondents, very few are actually self-employed.
Youth feel they have little control over their economic future. Better education and skills are considered insufficient to obtain a decent job without personal or family networks and connections, whether in the public, private, or informal sector, and even just to gain an internship. This is due to limited formal job intermediation mechanisms. One in three youth desires or plans to leave Morocco because of poor future prospects.