The group is counting on an exceptional return from Moroccans around the world after two years of absence, and has already noted an improvement in transfers of savings with a view to investing. An improvement in real estate loans is expected by the end of the season. These transfers and acquisitions nevertheless take place within a regulatory framework that is becoming increasingly tense, particularly with Europe.
On June 27, Banque Populaire (BP) held a press conference at the Casablanca hotel for the launch of the Moroccans of the World 2022 campaign. An opportunity for the bank to highlight the exceptional nature of this season after two difficult years.
BP is the incumbent operator of MDMs and captures the majority of their bank deposits with a market share of 53%, or nearly 100 billion dirhams. She recalls some key statistics concerning the MDMs and notes that on average, the latter carry out 6 money transfers per year for an average annual amount of 30,000 dirhams. In nearly ¾ of cases, these transfers are directed to family assistance. But a growing investment behavior in savings has been observed among MDMs since the beginning of the year.
A strong comeback of MDM and real estate investments expected in 2022
The start of Operation Marhaba 2022, on June 5, marked the big comeback of MDMs. This year, 3.5 million Moroccans and 800,000 vehicles are expected over the summer period. ” This two-year absence, through the pandemic, did not break ties. They have become much stronger with, as we have observed, a 40% increase in transfers, i.e. more than 94 billion dirhams underlines Jalil Sebti, General Manager of Retail Banking at the Banque Populaire group.
For the Bank, this year is about seizing the opportunity to better support the MDMs with transfer, savings and investment support products. To do this, it has focused its support for MDMs on two main axes, the development of the bank’s proximity to the diaspora with digital offers and in its regional networks in the various European countries with Chaabi Bank and support for MDMs in their investments.
” We have also strengthened our customer relations center to prepare and inform our MDM customers in the main countries where we operate. explains Soumia Alami Ouali, Director of Corporate Banking at Banque Populaire. The group has also counted on the launch of a new offer called Bladi Family. ” This is a new pack, which, through a single contribution, will allow the MDM to subscribe to a global offer for all its family including extra-banking services explains Soumia Alami Ouali.
Because this year, the Banque Populaire anticipates a sharp increase in the arrivals of MDMs in the territory, generated by a technical rebound. These arrivals of MDMs will also materialize financially through various investment operations.
” We are expecting an overshoot from the 2019 numbers. It’s a big technical rebound that’s going to happen in principle this year. We have seen it in transfers. We thought at the start of the pandemic that cash to cash should be the preferred transfer for MDMs, but it was a phase marked by helping families, particularly in 2020 and 2021. explains Jalil Sebti. But the Director of Retail Banking also notes that since 2022, during the first half of the year, transfers of savings in view of investments have been observed and are increasing sharply. ” We believe that this summer will be very beneficial for the acquisition of real estate housing. The first clues we have from our regional agencies show that there are a lot of files coming in and this bodes well for a very good season in terms of mortgages. he confides.
However, this comes in an increasingly hostile environment, as recalled by the Wali of Bank Al Maghrib during the second annual meeting of the central bank’s council on June 21.
Regulatory constraints but unnoticed effects on MDM transfers
In the press conference following BAM’s advice, Abdellatif Jouahri announced, regarding MDM’s transfers, that ” some European countries, including one in particular, are starting to take tough stances on MRE transfers. We also fear that there will be EU regulations that will make the operations of our banks more complex vis-à-vis their MRE customers. “.
On this theme of strengthening financial controls, a source in the banking sector, contacted by Médias24, testified to the tightening of transfers from MREs. ” There is an idea in Europe, which is not official, which is to make a sort of FATCA (Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act) to monitor assets held abroad by Europeans, and particularly foreign residents at home. We see this hardening on a daily basis with fairly extensive requests for information on our MRE clients, on their assets, the nature of their transfers… They want to know everything, even the tax status of these assets. explained the source in question.
Questioned on the subject, Jalil Sebti explains to us: “ the regulatory tightening in terms of transfers, indeed, we feel that it is there. We follow it closely and we understand that we must follow this evolution to reinvent ourselves, particularly when we have a responsibility with more than 100 billion dirhams of MDM deposits. We therefore follow the legislation country by country and globally within the European Union “. Nevertheless, no concern seems to be felt regarding the impacts on transfers from the diaspora to Morocco at the moment.
” Regarding the effects on bank transfers, we do not observe any downward changes, on the contrary, we see a trend which is bullish and interesting. We continue to work normally but keep an eye on what is happening to be able to anticipate. But whatever the case, the Moroccan who is attached to his family and his country, whatever the regulations, will continue to make transfers to save, acquire property or prepare for retirement. It is up to us to be able to support it as best as possible while respecting regulatory changes. he concludes.