IMF, Tunisia drafting loan details


Negotiations between Tunisia and the International Monetary Fund on a $1.78 billion loan are underway in the aftermath of a political turmoil which resulted in the resignation Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali.

An IMF spokesman said that “Negotiations for a new precautionary SBA are still ongoing at a technical level. Once a new government is named, we will enquire about its intentions/mandate. Once the political situation is clarified, we’ll assess how best to help Tunisia.”

The IMF earlier this month had stated that a stand-by arrangement that would be used as insurance to back the country’s development after its
2011 revolution, were at “an advanced stage”.

However,economic policy-making in Tunisia is threatened by a political crisis following the assassination of leading secular opposition politician Chokri Belaid outside his home in Tunis on February 6.

Jebali initially responded to the crisis by proposing to create a non-partisan cabinet of technocrats that would lead the country into early elections, but, he resigned on Tuesday after his own Islamist Ennahda party opposed the idea, fearing it would be sidelined from power.

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