1) Al Maghrib, the Arabic name for Morocco, means "far west" or "where the

sun sets." When the Arabs first arrived in northern Africa in the seventh
century C.E. , Morocco was believed to be the westernmost point in the
world. At that time, the Maghrib region included the countries that are today
Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia. The countries of the Maghrib share many
common historical and cultural features. All have indigenous Berber
populations and a strong Islamic base. Similarly, all were colonized by
France, and remain largely bilingual, with both French and Arabic being
spoken. Although European influence in Morocco is strong, it is still a
country of distinctly Arabic tradition.
2) European influence in Morocco is strong, it is still a country of distinctly
Arabic tradition. The vast difference between the crude life on the streets
and the hospitality and intimacy found in the home reflect the duality that is
deeply ingrained in Moroccan culture. But one aspect of Moroccan life that
is distinctly unified is religion. The king has declared that all citizens are
born Sunni Muslims, and Islam is an important part of everyday ritual life.
The Moroccan government is a constitutional monarchy, with a very
powerful king. It is this mix of European and Arab influence, loyalty to the
king and a strong Islamic base, that creates the uniquely Moroccan identity.
3) Morocco is slightly larger than the state of California, covering
approximately 174,000 square miles (447,000 square kilometers), and lies in
northern Africa just south of the Strait of Gibraltar. Its bordering countries
are Spain to the north, Algeria to the east, and the disputed Western Sahara
territory to the south. The northern portion of the country borders the
Atlantic Ocean to the west and the Mediterranean Sea to the northeast,
resulting in a moderate and subtropical coastal climate. Temperatures in the
interior are more extreme, with very hot summers and cold winters.
4) Demography. The current population of Morocco is approximately 30
million, half of whom are under the age of nineteen. Out of the total
population, 99.1 percent are identified as Arab-Berber. The indigenous tribes
who occupied much of northwestern Africa were given the generic title
Berber, meaning simply non-Arab, by the Arabs. After centuries of
intermingling, most Moroccans today are an Arab-Berber mix, although a
few tribes in the countryside identify themselves as purely Berber. The
remaining .09 percent of the population is comprised of Jews, white
Europeans, and black Africans.
5) Linguistic Affiliation. Moroccan Arabic is the official language of Morocco.
It is spoken by roughly three-quarters of the population and differs slightly
from modern standard Arabic and other dialects in grammar and
vocabulary. Although half a century has passed since the French colonial

government. so it is important to network and cultivate a number of contacts who may then assist you in working your way through the serpentine bureaucracy. Relationships & Communication . . A small gift for the children is seen as a token of affection. Berber dialects were spoken in Algeria. If she does not. it is common to kiss on both cheeks. . Morocco. Gift Giving Etiquette If you are invited to a Moroccan's home bring sweet pastries. French remains the official language in business. Do not bring alcohol unless you know that your host drinks. The black-and-white film was the 1943 Academy Award winner for best picture. . . nuts. Handshakes are the customary greeting between individuals of the same sex. Once a relationship has developed. Gifts are not opened when received. dates or flowers to the hostess. . shake hands with the person to your right and then continue around the room going from right to left. men with men and women with women. Meeting Etiquette When Moroccans greet each other they take their time and converse about their families. Who you know is more important than what you know. and Tunisia Symbolism. Handshakes may be somewhat weak according to western standards. friends. In any greeting that does take place between men and women. . therefore expect to spend time cultivating a personal relationship before business is conducted. Port activities by the French turned this city into the economic capital of the country in the early 1900s. Perhaps the most famous city in Morocco is Casablanca. Before the Arabs spread their language and culture across northern Africa. When entering a social function. starting with the left cheek while shaking hands. . and other general topics. figs. But it was the 1943 Hollywood classic film Casablanca. In 1942 the city was the site of an Allied invasion. that transformed the city into an international symbol of romance and wartime struggle. starring Ingrid Bergman and Humphrey Bogart. . and diplomacy. Moroccans prefer to do business with those they know and respect. .6) 7) 8) 9) period in Morocco ended. . and in 1943 it was the host city for a conference between Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Winston Churchill. a man should bow his head in greeting. Say good-bye to each person individually when leaving. . the woman must extend her hand first.

as this demonstrates hospitality. dress and present yourself well. . Appointments are necessary and should be made as far in advance as possible and confirmed a day or two before the meeting. Others may even wander into the room and start a different discussion. If the government is involved. It is important that you do not cause your Moroccan business associates to lose face. Moroccan businesspeople who are accustomed to dealing with international companies often strive to arrive on time. . . . .m. Check which language your meeting will be conducted in. French is generally the language of business. as it would be interpreted as an insult. Never try to schedule meetings on Friday between 11:15 a.. even during meetings. although it is often difficult for them to do so in such a relationship driven culture. Decisions are made slowly. . . . Companies are hierarchical. Moroccans are non-confrontational. discussions will take even longer since the ministers of several departments must often give approval. Expect a fair amount of haggling. Decisions are reached after great deliberation. Do not criticize anyone publicly. Try to arrive at meetings on time and be prepared to wait. Moroccans seldom see an offer as final. Do not try to rush the process. and 3 p. This means you may experience frequent interruptions. since most companies close for prayers. . . Since Moroccans judge people on appearances. . They may agree in meetings rather than cause you to lose face. It is best to avoid scheduling meetings during Ramadan since Muslims cannot eat or drink during the day. Moroccans are looking for long-term business relationships. but do not try to bring the topic back to the original discussion until the new person leaves. . You may join in. 11)Business Negotiations . so you know if you should hire an interpreter. . Expect to be served mint tea whenever you meet someone. but only after obtaining a group consensus. In general. The highest ranking person makes decisions. although some companies use English.m. Moroccans have an open-door policy. . . 10) Business Meeting Etiquette . Moroccan business practices have been greatly influenced by the French and emphasize courtesy and a degree of formality.

mineral ores. Skirts and dresses should cover the knee and sleeves should cover most of the arm. citrus. Morocco started a new stage of privatization. Women must be careful to cover themselves appropriately. Do not use high-pressure tactics as they will work against you.. and coffee or mint tea. . and may be referred to as the national dish. . turnips. and . vegetables. . 13) Food in Daily Life. Men should wear dark coloured conservative business suits to the initial meeting. Morocco is the world leader in the production and exportation of phosphates. . pottery. Two of the most basic foods in Moroccan daily life are couscous and harira soup. . dresses or pantsuits. attempting to encourage international investors. construction. Other major industrial activities include rock mining. and the manufacturing of leather goods. is a thick paste that comes in many varieties. Maintaining good personal relations with everyone is very important as favors. 12) Dress Etiquette . The society is extremely bureaucratic. wheat. It may take several visits to accomplish simple tasks. walnuts. . and pimentos. although it is classically made from water. including carpets. 15) Commercial Activities. Couscous. veal. saffron. and salt. It is eaten by all sectors of society. and livestock are produced for subsistence and for trade. or beef and a variety of vegetables such as tomatoes. Moroccans can be deliberate and forceful negotiators. kickbacks. with three-quarters of the world's reserves. and carved wood. Women should wear elegant business suits. onions. Breakfast in Morocco may consist of bread served with olive oil or butter. jewelry. Business attire is formal and conservative. In 1993. however. 14) Basic Economy. Since gaining its independence. Street markets with local foods and handicrafts. the state has owned most of Morocco's major industries. can be found in every major city. and connections all come into play when making the final deal. Agriculture and forestry form the basis of Morocco's economy. . Figs and dates are among the most common fruits eaten on a daily basis. food processing. The national soup. beef or mutton. traditional dress. olives. bouillon. Intense haggling over the price of most of these goods is the local custom. Barley. Most decisions require several layers of approval. a dish made with granulated seminola grains. bribes. Avoid wearing expensive accessories. 16) Major Industries. is usually topped with mutton. harira.

. A significant amount of foreign exchange revenue is brought in by Morocco's tourist industry. 17) Trade. Because of the rich cultural and historic heritage and renowned hospitality of the people. 18) Sooo… Morocco is one of the most diverse and beautiful countries in Africa. sweeping desert. citrus fruit. The primary imports are industrial machinery. the United States. Libya. and fuel. Japan. tourism is growing rapidly.textiles. The products go primarily to the members of the European Union (EU). and minerals. Morocco's primary importers are the EU. rugged coastline. with high mountains. and the winding alleyways of ancient medina cities and souqs. wheat. the United Arab Emirates. fish. the United States. Saudi Arabia. and India. Morocco's primary exports are phosphates and phosphoric acid. foods. and Russia.