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AfDB Supports Tunisia’s Efforts to Integrate into Global Economy

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Tunis, 16 April 2009 – The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group will support Tunisia’s program to boost growth and employment to enable the country to effectively integrate into the global economy with a US$ 250 million budget support loan, approved on Thursday in Tunis by the institution’s Board of Directors.

In line with the objectives of the country’s 11th Plan (2007-2011), the government’s program priorities and the Country Strategy Paper (CSP) for the same period, the Integration Support Project (PAI) aim at reducing transaction costs and deepening trade integration, improving access to bank and non-bank financing as well as improving the business environment.

The Programme will consolidate the gains of three previous Bank-supported competitiveness support programmes (PAC I, PAC II and PAC III) implemented from 1999 to 2007, aimed at strengthening the country's competitiveness within the context of the free trade agreement with the European Union. After completion of this process, the new program will enable the country integrate into the expanding global economy and benefit from the fruits of globalization.

Within the context of the prevailing international economic crisis, the Program will support the state budget in mitigating the impacts of the crisis, and contribute to maintaining macroeconomic stability. It also underscores the fact that Tunisia is deepening economic reforms to address the crisis, by strengthening economic integration, thereby improving its position in global trade and investment.

The Bank’s current portfolio in the country comprises 10 active projects with net commitments of UA 669 million, with 24% of the amount coming from the Private Sector window. With an overall rating of 2.7 points out of 3 in 2008, compared to 2.53 in 2005, the portfolio’s performance is very satisfactory.


*1 UA = US$ 1.49507= €1.12344 as at 16/04/2009

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