The Kingdom of Morocco has declared a state health emergency as from Friday, 20 March 2020 at 6 pm.
Two texts have legally implemented the state of emergency: Decree-Law No. 2-20-292 of 23 March 2020 on the declaration of a state of health emergency (1) and Decree No. 2-20-293 of 24 March 2020, which regulates the state of health emergency to contain the Covid-19 epidemic (2).
To the same end, a series of preventive measures have been adopted by the public administration in accordance with Circular of the Minister of Economy, Finance and Administrative Reform No 1/2020 of 16 March 2020. And, a Special Fund for the management of the Covid-19 epidemic was created by Decree No. 2-20-269 of 16 March 2020 following the instructions of King Mohammed VI.
In addition, within the framework of this state of health emergency, exceptional measures have been taken to the benefit of Moroccan companies by the Business Intelligence Committee (BIC), by the head of the Moroccan Tax Administration body (DGI) and by the Ministry of the Economy, Finance and Administrative Reform through the "DAMANE OXYGENE" guarantee mechanism and a Circular for Public Establishments and Enterprises (EEP).
In parallel with these measures, the Moroccan Capital Market Authority (AMMC) issued also a recommendation on financial communication to issuers to facilitate the circulation of information.
As far as employees are concerned, the National Social Security Fund, called in Morocco CNSS has laid down the terms and conditions for granting lump-sum compensation for their benefit, while insurance companies have taken measures in favour of the insured persons.
In addition, measures have also been taken to facilitate the employer-employee relationship by the supervising Ministry, which has published an explanatory guide to this effect (8).
Finally, temporary measures to regulate the necessary equipments for the containment of the Covid-19 epidemic have been taken by the Ministry of Economy, Finance and Administrative Reform and by the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Green Economy and the Digital Economy (9).
On Decree-Law No. 2-20-292 of 23 March 2020 on the declaration of a state of health emergency
What is the purpose of this Decree-Law?
1-According to this decree-law, in order to deal with the Covid-19 epidemic, a state of health emergency may be declared on all or part of Moroccan national territory.
2-This Decree-Law also allows the authorities to take all necessary measures to fight against the Covid-19 epidemic during the period of the state of health emergency, in particular by means of decrees.
3-This text lays down the general legal framework applicable to the current state of emergency.
What is the general legal framework applicable to the current state of emergency?
This legal framework revolves around two main subjects: sanctions for non-compliance with the provisions of Decree-Law No. 2-20-293 of 24 March 2020 below and all legal and regulatory deadlines with exceptions.
What are the penalties for non-compliance with the provisions of Decree-Law No. 2-20-293 of 24 March 2020?
A sentence of one to three months imprisonment and/or a fine ranging from MAD 300 to MAD 1300 without prejudice to the heaviest criminal penalty.
What about legal and regulatory deadlines?
Article 6 of this Decree-Law suspends the whole legal and regulatory deadlines in force for the duration of the state of emergency. However, exceptions are made for the period of time within which an appeal may be lodged against accused persons in detention and for counting the duration of pre-trial detention and police custody.
On the Decree-Law n°2-20-293 of March 24, 2020 which regulates the state of health emergency
What is the purpose of this decree-law?
This decree sets a deadline for a state of health emergency and lists the specific measures needed to contain the Covid-19 epidemic.
When will the state of health emergency end?
April 20, 2020, 6:00 p.m. (it can be prolonged)
What are the special measures set out in this decree-law to contain the Covid-19 epidemic?
1- Prohibiting persons from leaving their places of residence;
2- The movement of any person from his place of residence could only take place in cases of extreme necessity, in this case: travel to work, for the purchase of necessities, for health care, for family reasons and to help people in difficult situations;
3- Prohibiting of any gathering, assembly or meeting of a group of people; and
4- Closing of shopping malls and any establishment intended to receive the public during the period of the state of health emergency.