The Moroccan government has extended the current Health State of Emergency introduced due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic until November 10. First introduced on March 19, the State of Health Emergency has been extended six times.
A nighttime curfew between 22:00 and 05:00 (local time) remains in effect in Casablanca until at least October 19. Residents must obtain authorization from authorities in order to enter and exit the city during the restrictions. Closing times will also be adjusted for several establishments, with local markets having to close by 15:00, cafes by 20:00, and restaurants by 21:00.
Authorities have also classified areas as 'Zone 1' or 'Zone 2' regions based on the level of COVID-19 cases. In Zone 1 regions, restrictions have been eased further than in Zone 2. In Zone 1 areas, restaurants, cafes, hotels, beaches, and public baths, have been permitted to reopen. In Zone 2, permits are required to leave the province or prefecture. At a national level, domestic flights have resumed and gatherings, meetings, and other events of up to 20 people are permitted to be held. However, weddings, funerals, cinemas, and public swimming pools remain banned until further notice.
International passenger flights remain suspended. However, as well as repatriation and cargo flights continuing to operate, travelers can also now enter Morocco if they have an invitation from a Moroccan company and confirmed hotel reservations. Those arriving in Morocco will be required to present a negative Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) and a COVID-19 antibody test taken within 48 hours prior to travel.
As of Friday, October 9, there have been 142,953 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Morocco with 2,486 associated fatalities. Further international spread of the virus is to be expected in the near term.
The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Since then, human-to-human transmission of the virus has been confirmed.
Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic. Virus-screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions.
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, dry cough, and tiredness. Some patients may experience other symptoms such as body pains, nasal congestion, headache, conjunctivitis, sore throat, diarrhoea, loss of taste or smell, or a rash on skin or discoloration of fingers or toes. These symptoms (in most cases mild) appear gradually. Generally, most patients (around 80 percent) recover from the disease without being hospitalized.
Measures adopted by local authorities evolve quickly and are usually effective immediately. Depending on the evolution of the outbreak in other countries, authorities are likely to modify, at very short notice, the list of countries whose travelers are subject to border control measures or entry restrictions upon their arrival to the territory in question. It is advised to postpone nonessential travel due to the risk that travelers may be refused entry or be subject to quarantine upon their arrival or during their stay.
To reduce the risk of transmission, travelers are advised to abide by the following measures:
- Frequently clean hands by applying an alcohol-based hand rub or washing with soap and water.
- When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue; if used, throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands.
- If experiencing a fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, seek medical care urgently, and share your previous travel history with your health care provider.