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Tunisia has agreed an economic reform program with the IMF, a pre-requisite to completing the first review of a four-year $2.9bn IMF Extended Fund Facility (EFF) approved last May ( MEES, 27 May 2016 ). Tunisia mission chief Bjorn Rother says the deal, which still needs the approval of the IMF’s Executive Board, will open the way for the disbursement of a second tranche of $308mn of the EFF, which together with the first tranche of $319.5mn, will raise total disbursements to Tunisia to $627.5mn.
As Mr Rother notes, Tunisia’s economy faces major challenges, as “fiscal and external deficits reached record levels, the wage bill as a percentage of GDP has climbed to one of the highest in the world, and public debt further increased to 63% of GDP at the end of 2016.” He went on to say that growth in 2017 is expected to double to 2.3%, but will remain too low to reduce unemployment. Youth unemployment according to earlier IMF figures, has hit 35%, rising to 67% for recent graduates ( MEES, 17 February ). (CONTINUED - 771 WORDS)
DATA INSIDE THIS ARTICLE
|chart||Tunisia- Imf Forecasts: Repeat Downgrades To Past Projections Undermine Forecasts Of Future Improvement On Growth (%)...|
|chart||...And The Current Account Deficit (% Of Gdp)|
|chart||Tunisia’s Oil Balance: Self-Sufficient In 2010, The Country Now Relies On Imports For Over 50% Of Supplies|