Publication | Report/Paper

Focus on Morocco | Paid Work and Control of Earnings & Assets Topic Brief

This topic brief presents the main findings from the SWMENA survey1 in Morocco on paid work and employment. It includes analysis of participation by Moroccan women in the formal economy through their wage labor and subsequent control over their earnings and any other assets. In addition, other features of income and formal sector involvement are discussed, such as receipt of benefits as a part of employment.

Labor Force Participation

Labor force participation among Moroccan women is extremely low, particularly when compared to that of men: 69% of men work for pay, compared to only  10% of women. Arabic-speaking women, unmarried women, and urban women all somewhat more likely to work than their respective counterparts, but even among these groups labor force participation is quite low by international standards.

Low labor force participation cannot be entirely attributed to preferences of women themselves: fully 84% of young women surveyed indicated that they intended to or already were pursuing a career. Although this question was asked only of respondents under age 25, even among this ambitious age group only 10% of women currently work.

1 From December 2009 through January 2010, the SWMENA survey was disseminated to 2,000 women and 500 men in Morocco.  The survey is designed to assess how women in Morocco view themselves as members of society, the economy and the polity.