The Covid-19 pandemic has hit Tunisia particularly hard. Already before the pandemic, the country was plagued by prolonged stagnation of the economy and an ongoing crisis of social justice and employment. Those working in the large informal sector, mostly without access to social security, were left largely without sufficient assistance. The health sector, long underfunded and suffering from continuous brain-drain, struggled to cope with the pandemic. Without revenues from tourism and overall weak economic performance, the government was forced to increase public debt to finance its budget. Therefore, public debt, including foreign, has been constantly rising.
It is safe to assume, that the main consequence of this situation will be further austerity for the coming years. Reduced funding for social protection and public services will make poor Tunisians even poorer and further threaten the middle class. The social and economic marginalization of large parts of the population would continue.
To avoid this scenario, a unified push by Tunisian civil society and unions to oppose austerity, propose alternatives, and secure the support of Tunisia’s international creditors to address the looming debt crisis is urgently needed. Our project plans to provide accessible research and policy analysis, as well as a platform to strengthen national and regional alliances and initiate a discussion on the international level.
This paper discusses the current debt situation of Tunisia, suggested reforms that may end up being part of the International Monetary Fund program... More
At the beginning of the pandemic in spring 2020,it was not so much the health crisis ,which hit developing countries like Tunisia hard. While Europe... More