Morocco has made significant economic headway since the 1990s, averaging 4.9 percent of growth over 2001-2011. The unemployment rate declined from 12.3 percent in 2000 to 8.9 percent in 2011. Absolute poverty decreased from 15.3 percent to roughly 9 percent between 2001 and 2007. Based on these achievements, Morocco achieved “investment grade” rating in 2007, which was confirmed over 2009-2011 despite ongoing world economic turmoil. These achievements were in part the result of sound macroeconomic policies. The policies adopted include a prudent debt strategy which resulted in central government debt declining from 68 percent in 2000 to 50.3 percent of GDP in 2010. To improve debt management capacity, the debt management office strengthened its institutional structure by creating front, middle, and back office functions. The Ministry of Economy and Finance also partnered with the World Bank to manage financial risks on its IBRD loan portfolio, making use of opportunities to execute interest rate and currency hedges.