Shortages of satchels in sight

A few weeks before the start of the school year for thousands of children in Morocco, traders and booksellers are facing shortages of schoolbags. In question, a circular from the General Administration of Customs and Direct Taxes (ADII) which caused losses for traders.

Will Moroccan schoolchildren all have the opportunity to buy a new schoolbag this year? The question is asked a few weeks before classes resume.

It was even asked at the level of Parliament where the Minister of Industry and Trade, Ryad Mezzour was challenged on this subject through a written question from a member of the National Union of Labor in Morocco (UNTM) .

The shortage of schoolbags is explained by a note from the ADII, released on May 30, which lists the quality criteria required for the import of schoolbags.

But retailers and importers had already placed their orders with service providers, including Chinese during the month of January, well before the note from the ADII which determines new criteria for the import of these binders.

When they were received, which took place after the publication of the circular, it turned out that the goods ordered did not correspond to the criteria set by the ADII.

The schoolbags were subjected to tests and analyzes to verify their conformity and the results were negative overall, which gave rise to the seizure of the lots of the goods prohibited from sale.

Deprived of their goods, merchants who did not buy schoolbags meeting ADII standards lost their entire order as well as their investment, causing the repercussion of a lack of schoolbags to be sold to parents of students for this Back to School.

Indeed, the start of the 2022-2023 school year promises to be complicated for parents and the sector. Parents are already complaining about the rise in the price of school supplies, while the government has subsidized carriers precisely to avoid rising product prices.

If the publishers of textbooks have given up their decision to increase prices after an agreement, the case of supplies poses a problem. Booksellers and sellers of school materials do not hesitate to blame suppliers who have increased their margins.

For their part, the parents of students are overwhelmed with bills after a hectic year, particularly with private schools who wanted to be paid for a month’s tuition, July in this case, when they did not give lessons. students because of the back-to-school date which has been postponed by the government, and these same schools which increase their re-registration fees and their monthly payments each year.

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