Morocco’s economy is more robust than that of many of its neighbors. Growth averaged 4% between 2009 and 2015. But it fell last year as the deficit doubled. Recent protests highlight social tensions fueled by high youth unemployment.

Morocco’s GDP growth slowed to just 1.1% for 2016, way down on 2015’s 4.5% and the lowest level in 10 years.

The country’s current account deficit meanwhile ballooned to 4.4% of GDP, not only twice the 2015 level but also a major...