No.2 The 2009 Communal Charter and Local Service Delivery in Morocco
In 2008, Morocco issued a new Communal Charter (implemented in 2009) and, with it, decentralization formally became the cornerstone of Morocco’s economic and political reform. The Charter represents the culmination not only of the regime’s regionalization plan – the primary intention of which is to allow the peoples and institutions of the disputed Western Sahara to manage their own affairs while remaining under Moroccan sovereignty – but also of reforms that have been made since the late 1990s to promote the local level as a central component of their implementation. The Charter devolves political power to municipalities, thereby reducing the supervisory powers of the Ministry of Interior over municipal affairs. The Charter thus married democratization with development and was issued with much fanfare. Yet service delivery continues to be highly uneven in Morocco, both between and within regions. The results of this report are based on in-depth research conducted in seven municipalities, representing 50% of the regions in Morocco.