IMF urges deficit regulate in Tunisia even as protesters demand careers

TUNIS, Jan 22 (Reuters) – The Global Financial Fund (IMF) warned on Friday that Tunisia’s fiscal deficit could exceed 9% of GDP and urged the country to handle power subsides, transfers to point out firms and wages, even as protesters have been demanding jobs and financial progress.

Violent protests have strike Tunisia at a time of unparalleled economic hardship in the North Africa nation that ran a fiscal deficit of 11.5% of GDP in 2020, the best in almost four a long time.

The 2021 budget aims to lower the fiscal deficit to 6.6 pct but the IMF, adhering to a mission in Tunisia, issued a assertion calling for particular measures to again this objective.

Governing administration wages doubled to about 20 billion dinars ($7.45 billion) in 2021 from 7.6 billion in 2010.

Tunisia expects GDP growth of 3.8% this calendar year, in contrast with a record contraction of 8.2% predicted in 2020.

The Central Bank agreed in December to buy treasury bonds worth 2.8 billion to finance the history fiscal deficit in 2020 spending plan just after weeks of disagreement with the authorities.

But the IMF urged fiscal authorities to avoid foreseeable future financial funding of the federal government, as it challenges reversing the gains achevied in terms of lowering inflation, stating this could weaken the exchange price and global reserves.

Its assertion said “specific steps are desired … and in their absence, team initiatives a larger deficit of around 9 % of GDP.”

Tunisia has been hailed as the Arab Spring’s only democratic good results story because protests toppled autocrat Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in 2011 without having triggering violent upheaval, as took place in Libya, Egypt and Syria. But since then, all cabinets have unsuccessful to resolve Tunisia’s economic woes like large inflation and unemployment, and impatience over its slowness in carrying out reforms is increasing among the worldwide creditors. ($1 = 2.6858 Tunisian dinars) (Reporting By Tarek Amara Editing by David Gregorio)