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World Bank utilizes artificial intelligence to evaluate its programs in Morocco for last 10 years

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The World Bank issued on Tuesday a comprehensive Country Program Evaluation Report, which assessed the development effectiveness of the World Bank Group’s support provided to Morocco over the past decade, encompassing the fiscal years 2011 to 2021.

Titled, “The World Bank Group in Morocco: Learning and Adapting for Impact”, the round table shed light on the four major obstacles to Morocco’s development identified through in-depth studies and broad consultations with citizens, experts, development partners, and stakeholders.

This report dug into a decade of the World Bank’s experiments in Morocco, a truly defining period for both the Bank and the kingdom. Morocco went through some major turning points during those years, like adopting a new constitution in 2011, the King’s speech on intangible capital in 2014, and the call for a whole new development model in 2018, which was officially finalized in 2021.

The evaluation centered around four key areas, namely policy coherence, leveling the economic playing field, the implementation of public sector reforms, and citizens’ participation. This lens was employed to assess the World Bank Group’s engagement with Morocco across three crucial domains over the past decade, namely the private sector development, human capital development, and sustainable development given Morocco’s climate challenges.

Presented by Estelle Raimondo, Program Manager of the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG), the World Bank Group has successfully illuminated the content of public policy when it has used the full range of its analytical skills, capitalized on its management of global benchmark data, and combined analysis with a flexible dialogue on public policy to find practical solutions.

The group has been able to assist Morocco in improving its performance in the 10 regulatory areas measured by Doing Business indicators. It has additionally contributed to broader reforms for fair competition in the market.

It has also successfully strengthened the institutional capacities of national institutions charged with supervising competition and business climate. Its comprehensive approach to financial system reform has helped micro, small, and medium-sized businesses receive funding.

As to the third impact area during the evaluation period, Morocco embarked on ambitious public-sector reforms. However, the implementation of these reforms, given their multi-sectoral nature, has proven to be complex.

The World Bank has played a key role in mitigating innovation risks and facilitating various elements of these reforms. Notably, during this period, the World Bank Group began working with donors and partners involved in Morocco’s development, as well as boosting private investment, particularly in the solar sector, to adapt and invest effectively.

The group has also helped in facilitating South-South learning between Morocco and some developing countries. Examples include the reform of the social protection system and the bank’s support in implementing Morocco’s ambitious reforms across various ministries.

The World Bank, according to the main conclusions of the report, has made supporting the state to promote civic and economic participation a pillar of its strategy. It has also invested in some diagnoses linked to the labor market and employment of youth.

However, the Bank has not successfully translated its diagnosis of obstacles to civic and economic citizen participation into effective operations.

Promising experiences aimed at resolving financing and capacity issues at the regional level have started, noted Raimondo.

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