Royal Moroccan Armed Forces


Royal Moroccan Armed Forces

1. Order of battle
2. Overview
3. Defence economics
4. State of military forces
5. Country threat reports
6. Major external deployments

1. Order of Battle

Total force strength Army: 175 000
Air Force: 13 000
Navy: 7 800 (Marines and Coast Guard account for another 2 000)
Auxiliary Force: 25 000
Royal Gendarmerie: 10 000
Armour 40: T-72
200: M1A1 Abrams (modernised second hand)
220: M60A1
120: M60A3
184: M48A5
54: Type-90-II/MBT-2000
54: AMX-13
111: SK-105 Kuerassier
20: ERC-90
Reconnaissance 35: AML-60
140: AML-90
80: AMX-10RC
40: EBR-75
16: Eland
20: M1114 HMMWV
APC 10: AMX-10P
30: MK III-20 Ratel-20
30: MK III
60: Ratel-90
400: M113A1/A2
86: M577A2
320: VAB VTT
55: UR-416
Self-propelled artillery 84: M109A1/A1B 155 mm
43: M109A2 155 mm
90: (AMX) Mk F3
60: M110 203 mm
Towed artillery 30: L118 Light Gun 105 mm
18: M101 105 mm
40: M101A 105 mm
18: M-46 130 mm
30: FH-70 155 mm
20: M114 155 mm
Multiple Rocket Launcher 35: BM-21 122 mm
12: AR-2/PHL-03 300 mm
Mortar 36: M106A2 106 mm self-propelled mortar
20: VAB APC 120 mm
1 100: Expal model LN 81 mm
550: Brandt 120 mm
Anti-armour 80: M901
9K11 Malyutka (AT-3 Sagger)
M47 Dragon
50: Red Arrow-8/HJ-8
100: 9M113/AT-5 Spandrel
100: 9M133 Kornet/AT-14
Recoilless rifle 350: M40A1 106 mm
200: M20 89 mm
8: SU-100 100 mm
28: M-56 90 mm
Air defence gun 40: M163 Vulcan 20 mm
150-180: ZPU-2 14.5 mm
20: ZPU-4 14.5 mm
75-90: ZU-23-2 23 mm
17: KS-19 100 mm
Air defence missile 12: 2K22M Tunguska-M (SA-19 Grison)
37: M48 Chaparral
9K32 Strela-2 (SA-7 Grail)‡
3: I-Hawk SAM system
162: MIM-23B Hawk
Armoured Recovery Vehicle 10: Greif
18: M88A1; M578
Army aviation 4: Alouette II
3: Gazelle
6: A109
Structure 2: commands (Northern Zone, Southern Zone)

12: Armoured battalions
3: Mechanised infantry brigades
8: Mechanised/motorised infantry regiments
1: Light systems brigade
3: (camel corps) Motorised infantry battalion
35: Light infantry battalion
4: Commando unit
Air Manoeuvre
2: Paratrooper brigade
2: AB battalion
1: Mountain infantry battalion
Combat Support
11: Artillery battalion
7: Engineer battalion

Air Force
Combat aircraft 19: F-5E Tiger II
3: F-5F Tiger II
16: F-16C Fighting Falcon
8: F-16D Fighting Falcon
16: Mirage F-1C (F-1CH)*
11: Mirage F-1E (F-1EH)*
1: EC-130H Hercules
* 27 Mirage F1s upgraded to MF-2000 standard
Trainer aircraft 12: AS-202 Bravo
19: Alpha Jet
2: CAP-10
24: T-6C
Maritime/EW/RECCE aircraft 2: Do-28 PAX
1: RF-5A
2: Falcon 20
Transport aircraft 2: KC-130H Hercules
4: C-27J Spartan
13 C-130H Hercules
4: Beech 100 King Air
2: Beech 200 King Air
1:Beech 200C King Air
2: Beech 300 King Air
3: Beech 350 King Air
7: CN-235
1: B-737BBJ
1: Falcon 50
2: Boeing 707
VIP aircraft 1: Gulfstream II
1: Gulfstream III
1: Gulfstream V-SP
1: Gulfstream G550 (Royal Moroccan Flight)
4: King Air 350 (Royal Moroccan Flight)
Combat helicopter 19: SA342L Gazelle
Transport helicopter 10: CH-47 Chinook
24: SA330 Puma
25: Bell 205A (AB-205A)
11: Bell 206 Jet Ranger (AB-206)
3: Bell 212 (AB-212)
2: Dauphin
Gendarmerie 2: S-70B
7: SA-330H
5: SA 342K
Coast Guard 10: BN-2T Defender
2: AS-356N
Frigate 3: Tarik ben Ziyad (SIGMA 9813/10513)
2: Mohammed V (Floreal type)
1: Mohammed VI (Fremm)
Corvettes 1: Lt Col Errhamani (Spanish Descubierta type)
Patrol/Strike boat 1: Bin an Zaran (OPV 70)
4: Lazaga class
5: Rais Bargach (French OPV-64 type)
4: El Lahiq (Osprey type, incl 2 with customs)
6: Vigilance class (Spanish B-200D Cormoran type for fishery protection)
2: Okba FAC (French PR-72 type)
6: El Wacil (P-32 type coastal patrol craft)
10 :VCSM (RPB 20)
10: Rodman 101
1 other (UK Bird)
4: El Khattabi class (modified Spanish Lazaga type)
10: Arcor-17
18: Arcor-46
15: Arcor-53
Amphibious/Transport/Supply 3: Ben Aicha (Batral type)
1: Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah (ex-US Newport class)
1: CTM (FRA CTM-5)
1: Abou Barakat Albarbari (ex-US Robert D. Conrad)
1: Stan 1504
1: Essaouira
1: Ad-Dakhla class cargo ship
Structure 2: Naval infantry battalion

2. Overview
Head of State and Government: Abdelilah Benkirane
Defence Minister: Abdellatif Loudiyi
Chief of Staff: King Mohammed VI
Chief of Staff of Air Defences: General Abdelaziz Bennani

Chief of Staff of the Air Force: General Ahmed Boutaleb
Chief of Staff of the Navy: Admiral Mohammed Laghmari
Member of: UN, AU, LAS, AfDB, G77, Arab League, ICAO, Seabeds Committee etc
3. Defence economics
Military expenditure (ME) as percentage of GDP (2004-2013)

Military expenditure per US$ Mil (2000-2013)

Military expenditure (ME) percentage growth (2000-2013)

4. State of military forces

Morocco’s army is very well equipped and trained and has had intensive experience in desert fighting due to the country’s counter-insurgency operations in the Western Sahara. The military also maintains a strong relationship with both the United States of America and France. Having one of the biggest armies in Africa makes Morocco a military heavyweight on the continent, something it deems necessary to counter its rival and neighbour Algeria, which has an even larger military.

The ongoing conflict in the Western Sahara between Morocco and the Polisario Front (PF) has often brought the Moroccan military into controversy, especially over suspected human rights abuses against Sahrawi civilians. The military also continues to battle problems with corruption and poorly educated soldiers and faces an inefficient bureaucracy. The lack of a Ministry of Defence as such (the armed forces are administered by the Office of the Prime Minister through a Minister Delegate) has also hampered the military.

Although the country’s air force is dated, some modern aircraft have been acquired, such as a shipment of F-16s which arrived in 2012 as part of a larger package. However the majority of the country’s aircraft were bought in the 1980s and will have to be replaced in the future. Morocco’s navy is also aging and is proving incapable of countering the increase in smuggling across the Mediterranean, although the navy has been boosted by the recent acquisition of corvettes and frigates.

The government has announced an intention to significantly increase defence spending at an annual growth rate of 4.4% between 2014 and 2018. Equipment purchases are expected to focus on fighter aircraft acquisition along with submarines and patrol boats. The majority of this is expected to be done with the USA and other NATO countries as Morocco has no local defence industry of its own.
5. Country threat report

Threat type Overview
External • Morocco is currently facing no external security threat.
Internal • Morocco is currently facing internal security threats presented by the Polisario Front (PF) which controls 25% of the territory in Western Sahara.
• Morocco also faces a limited threat from the rise of Islamic fundamentalism and a rise in domestic terrorism.
Regional • Morocco faces no significant regional threats although rivalry continues with neighbouring Algeria.
Political • Morocco has managed to maintain a strong level of political stability despite the spread of the Arab Spring and pro-democracy movements in the region.
Economic • Morocco’s economy is largely driven by agriculture, phosphates and tourism. The country does suffer economically as it has to import fuel.

6. Major external deployments

Operation Country Personnel/assets
MUNUSCO Democratic Republic of Congo Troops: 843
Police: 2
MINUSCA Central African Republic Troops: 749
Police: 2
UNOCI Liberia Troops: 722


National Defence Administration
6Bis, Rue Patrice Lumumba



Tel +212 762 731/60150/60805