Posted on November 1, 2014


Morocco was at the Salon International Tourisme Voyages in Montreal last weekend.
Morocco at Salon
Yes, tourism to a large extent drives its economy as reflected by its liberal tourist visa policy exempting most countries.

But there’s another photo that I want to share with you, a photo that went viral!
Morocco golf course migrants
Incidentally, the photo above was carried on Monday on Duncan Green’s Links I like on his great From Poverty to Power website with the following caption: “European golfers v African migrants trying to jump the fence in Melilla, via Jaime Atienza”.

The connection with Moroccan tourism? There was a protest at the time of the establishment of golf course given it was funded by the European Union. Here’s the background.

“The Club Campo de Golf in Melilla has made headlines before. In 2009, Ecologists in Action asked the European Union to open an investigation into the course (pdf). Citing the location as insulting, the organisation asked the EU to investigate why more than €1.1m was given to the project by the European Regional Development Fund, which is meant to “strengthen economic and social cohesion” in the EU and correct imbalances between regions. Their petition was dismissed, with the commissioner noting that the objectives of the golf course were to “increase tourism, create jobs and promote sport and sporting values”.

Lastly, I have posted before on the Scrap Short Term Tourist Visa to Ghana Facebook page items referring to migrants seeking opportunity by trying to escape their countries. This reference is always made in the context of African governments trying to provide more opportunities for their youth by focusing more attention on their tourism industries to provide jobs. The formula always presented is visa facilitation=more international leisure tourists=more jobs. LIKE MOROCCO!