Morocco/ 2. General objectives and principles of cultural policy  

2.1 Main features of the current cultural policy model

The current cultural policy involves cooperation between the MoC and community groups to promote cultural decentralisation.

In its strategy to support decentralisation and expand the network of cultural institutions, the MoC provides cultural infrastructure and encourages creative contributions in culture and art.

Local communities have become one of the key elements upon which the MoC depends for cultural decentralisation. They are responsible for planning, programming and executing cultural projects if regional cultural disparity is to be reduced.  The MoC must in turn support regional cultural specificities, and achieve a balanced and equitable distribution of cultural activities.

The cultural development outline of 2000-2004 prioritised cooperation among the MoC and all government sectors, elected councils and civil society organisations involved in cultural development. It also called for raising the level of cultural services, improving the conditions and methods of work, establishing a cultural policy based primarily on decentralisation and regionalisation, partnering with local communities, and giving priority to rural and remote areas. Through these an integrated national cultural renaissance was realisable.

To achieve cultural decentralisation and to facilitate dealing with local communities in the cultural field, the MoC established the Directorate of Cultural Development, includeing a section in charge of cultural coordination with local communities. This section creates regional directorates of culture according to the regional divisions of Morocco.

Since the 80s, the Ministry has organised several debates, seminars and study days in order to develop a comprehensive vision of Moroccan culture and outline a clear cultural strategy. It organised two national symposiums about Moroccan culture (one on musical education, another one on professional theatre), two study days on culture and decentralisation, a study day on culture and children, and a national meeting about books. Several cultural sectors of government and non-governmental organisations, as well as cultural associations, community groups, teachers, researchers and specialists have participated in these cultural events. Their efforts culminated in recommendations to rearrange priorities and conduct surveys to detect cultural needs throughout Morocco.   

The MoC and local communities coordinate to organise local cultural activities and events, create and operate cultural institutions, and ensure preservation and restoration of physical heritage writ large.

In 2013 and 2014, the Ministry of Culture worked on 9 new cultural centres in all of the cities: Ibn Ahmad, El Kelaa des Sraghna, Benslimane Hassar, Shyshawah, Ovens, Taourirt, Rashidieh, Essaouira, and Sala, at a cost of up to 86 million dirhams. The Ministry also worked during 2013 on the processing of 10 cultural centres in all of the cities: Ouarzazate, Berkane, Taounate, Al-Faqih Bin Saleh, Outat el Haj, Dakhla, Ain Harrouda, Al-Hassani, Tit Mellil, and the ancient city in Casablanca, with a cost of $27 million dirhams. It also worked to create 4 cultural centres in: El Kelaa des Sraghna, Tetouan, Abe aljaid, and Marrakesh with estimated cost of 8 million dirhams.

Chapter published: 05-05-2016