IMF Advises Tunisia To Strengthen Safety Net, Promote Public Investment

IMF Advises Tunisia to Strengthen Safety Net, Promote Public Investment

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission to Tunisia has advised the country to boost its welfare systems and public investment amid the coronavirus pandemic

MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 23rd January, 2021) The International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission to Tunisia has advised the country to boost its welfare systems and public investment amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The remote mission, headed by economist Chris Geiregat, was conducted on December 9-18 and January 4-13, within the framework of Article IV consultations. During such consultations, IMF staff arrives in a country to assess its economic and financial policies. According to the IMF staff, Tunisia saw its GDP contracting by 8.2 percent last year due to the pandemic, resulting in increased poverty and unemployment.

"Staff encourages the authorities to continue to strengthen targeted safety nets and favor growth-enhancing public investment," Geiregat said in a statement.

According to the economist, the country is currently facing the challenge of preserving lives and livelihoods amid the COVID-19 and dealing with fiscal and external imbalances.

"The medium-term outlook and public debt sustainability depend on the authorities' adoption of a credible and well-communicated reform plan that benefits from the Tunisian society and international development partners' strong buy-in. To this end, it would be critical to gain support from the relevant stakeholders on issues within their remit," Geiregat continued.

The IMF mission also called for anti-corruption, good governance and transparency reforms to do away with monopolies and other distortions that impede potential economic growth.