Like television, radio is one of Moroccan’s favorite means to access news and information. However, unlike TV, it is also one of the most diverse media, allowing debates and a wide range of shows. This is one of the results of the opening-up of the radio sector to the private sector in 2004. Today, Morocco counts 34 radio stations. Out of them, 19 are privately-owned and 14 publicly-owned. The 2M Radio station is owned at 71% by the State. The audience share of these privately-owned radios is 64.23%, showing their rapid success over the years.
For decades, the radio panorama was highly unstructured, as there was no governing body or oversight authority to regulate it. As such, it was characterized by a State monopoly. The High Authority for Audiovisual Communication (Haute Autorité de la Communication Audiovisuelle [HACA]) was created in 2002 by royal decree and has since then been charged with accompanying the opening of the radio and TV industries to the private sector.
For radios, this opening process was implemented through two waves of licence granting: a first one in 2006 that has given broadcasting frequencies to 6 radios and 2 groups of local radios; a second one in 2009 where 4 additional radios had their projects approved. It should be noted that 2 private radios have not been subjected to this process: Medi1 Radio, created in 1980, and the 2M radio channel to which a license was given out in 2004, as it is belongs to the private-public group SOREAD.
As of today, the State remains the majority holder of radios through the public company SNRT. It owns 4 national radio channels and 8 regional channels, which gather more than 25% of the daily audience.