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  Child labour
Number of working children down to 170,000
Child labour phenomenon has significantly decreased in Morocco since 1999, said on Friday the High Commission for planning (HCP).

The HCP has said that the number of working children, aged between 7 and 15, stood at 170,000 in 2009, that is 3.4% of all children in the same age bracket.

Working children numbered 517,000 in 1999, representing 9.7% of all children under 15, explained the HCP in a statement issued on the occasion of World Day against Child Labour.

“Morocco has made considerable progress in the fight against this phenomenon especially through enhancing access to schooling,” it added.

In urban areas, the number of working children amounted to 19,000 in 2009, 0.7%, against 2.5% in 1999. In rural areas, however, that figure rose to 151,000, that is 6.4% against 16.2% in 1999.

The HCP also noted that nine out of ten working children (89%) live in rural areas, as child labour in Morocco is a rural phenomenon after all.

Socio-demographically speaking, 6 out 10 children are boys. This proportion varies between 55.0% in rural area and 83.3% in the urban ones.

Furthermore, 16.6% of children work and study at the same time, while 56.1% have left school for good and 27.3% have never attended it.

In the countryside, 93.5% of children work in agriculture, foresting and fisheries. In the city, they mainly work in services (43.9%) and industry including handicraft (36.4%).

The World Day against Child Labour, initiated by the International Labour Organization in 2002, is celebrated every year on June 12 to draw attention to child labour internationally and to the actions necessary to curb this phenomenon.
  By CMC
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