Blocked from Europe, migrants settle in Morocco

Published: 27/Dec/2017
Source: Arab News / AFP

RABAT: Unable to reach Europe in search of a better life, Aliou Ndiaye settled in Morocco instead, giving up on his original goal like thousands of other sub-Saharan African migrants.


Despite Morocco’s new migration policies and the kingdom’s efforts to re-integrate with the African Union after decades outside the bloc, it is hard to gain permanent residency.

“I heard the king say on the radio that it would be a lot easier, but I have the impression that he was not heard,” Mbaye said.

The authorities are currently processing some 25,000 residency applications. A similar “regularization” campaign in 2014 saw around 23,000 people gain renewable residency.

It is hard to estimate how many African migrants are living in Morocco, especially as many are clandestine.  Official statistics show that around 35,000 had residency in 2014, according to the OCP Policy Center. That is slightly above the number of European migrants who came for work or seeking a retirement home under the Moroccan sun.

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Themes: Naturalisation and Marriage
Regions: Morocco
Year: 2017