Oriental (Morocco)

Oriental (Arabic: الشرق, romanized: aš-šarq; Berber languages: ⵜⴰⴳⵎⵓⴹⴰⵏⵜ, romanized: tagmuḍant) is one of the twelve regions of Morocco, located in the eastern part of the country. It covers an area of 90,127 km² and has a population of 2,314,346 (2014 census).


  • جهة الشرق  (Arabic)
  • ⵜⴰⵎⵏⴰⴹⵜ ⵜⴰⴳⵎⵓⴹⴰⵏⵜ  (Berber languages)
Jebel Tamejout - Grotte du Chameau (Zegzel)
Location in Morocco
Coordinates: 34°41′N 1°54′W
Country Morocco
  Wali (Governor)Mohamed Mhidia
  PresidentAbdenbi Bioui
  Total90,127 km2 (34,798 sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)

The capital and the largest city is Oujda, and the second largest city is Nador. The region includes 7 provinces and one prefecture. Mohamed Mhidia became wali (governor) of the region in 2015.[1]

A majority of the population of Oriental speak Moroccan Arabic (86.2%) as a first or second language. A large minority speak the Rif-Berber language (38.4%) as a first language. Small numbers speak Eastern Middle Atlas Tamazight and Figuig Tamazight, principally in the south of Oriental.[2]


The English name Oriental is derived from the French term L'Oriental (for "the east") and comes directly from the Latin orientalis, "of the east", being that the region is located in the east of Morocco.[3] The Arabic name Ash-Sharq also means "the east", as does the Berber name Tagmuḍant (from agmuḍan).


Oriental is situated in the eastern part of the country, with a northern coastline on the Mediterranean Sea. The regions of Taza-Al Hoceima-Taounate, Fès-Boulemane and Meknès-Tafilalet lie to its west, with the Algerian provinces of Tlemcen and Naâma to its east and Béchar to the south. Melilla, a Spanish autonomous city, also borders the region. In 2015, Oriental was expanded to include Guercif Province.

The region is made up into the following prefectures and provinces:[4]

Municipalities by population (2014)

Main square of Oujda, the regional capital and largest city.
NameProvince/PrefecturePopulation (2014)
NadorNador Province161,726
BerkaneBerkane Province109,237
TaourirtTaourirt Province103,398
Beni Ensar / Aït NsarNador Province56,582
Al AarouiNador Province47,599
JeradaJerada Province43,506
El Aioun Sidi MelloukTaourirt Province41,832
BouargNador Province37,737
ZaioNador Province35,806
ZeghanghaneNador Province34,025
Sidi Slimane EchcharraaBerkane Province30,202
BouarfaFiguig Province28,846
Bni ChikerNador Province26,884
Oulad SettoutNador Province23,218
SelouaneNador Province21,570
BoughribaBerkane Province20,513
AhfirBerkane Province19,630
ArekmaneNador Province18,490
MtalssaDriouch Province16,787
TalsintFiguig Province16,166
Bni TadjiteFiguig Province16,149
ZegzelBerkane Province16,137
TendraraFiguig Province15,390
MidarDriouch Province17,042
DriouchDriouch Province14,741
Ben TaiebDriouch Province14,257
TemsamaneDriouch Province13,920
Ain Bni MatharJerada Province13,526
FiguigFiguig Province12,516



  1. "Installation de Mohamed Mhidia, wali de la région de l'Oriental". 21 Oct 2015. Retrieved 23 Dec 2016.
  2. "Population selon les langues nationales par régions en 2014 (%)". 13 Oct 2015. p. 30. Archived from the original on 22 October 2015. Retrieved 23 Dec 2016.
  3. "Online Etymology Dictionary". www.etymonline.com. Douglas Harper. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
  4. "Décret fixant le nom des régions" (PDF). Portail National des Collectivités Territoriales (in French). Archived from the original (pdf) on 2015-05-18. Retrieved 2015-07-11.
  5. "Recensement général de la population et de l'habitat 2014". Hcp.ma. Archived from the original on 2015-09-14. Retrieved 2015-09-14.
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