(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE SAUDI NEWS AGENCY ASHARQ AL-AWSAT)
French Development Agency’s Commitments to Tunisia to Reach 1.2 Billion Euros
The French Development Agency (AFD) has renewed its EUR 1.2 billion commitment to finance projects over the next five years.
In a statement to TAP on the sidelines of a press conference held on Monday to celebrate the agency’s 25th anniversary, AFD Director Gilles Chausse recalled that the French authorities announced at the Tunisia 2020 conference, which was held in November 2016, the commitment of EUR 1.2 billion, which will finance investment projects part of the five-year development plan (2016/2020).
He said the AFD will focus on traditional intervention sectors, including vocational training, transport and agriculture and is expected to open on other sectors such as health, ICTs, social protection and governance in which a number of operations are already underway such as the governance of public enterprises.
Tunisian authorities are waiting for several countries, which had participated in the Tunisia 2020 international conference by making financial promises, to meet their pledges.
At the time Prime Minister Youssef Chahed said the investment conference enabled Tunisia to mobilize 34 billion dinars ($15 billion).
In this regard, Tunisian economic expert Saad Boumakhle said that the initiative of several international financial bodies to fund investment projects in Tunisia would have positive effects on the country’s economy, which is badly in need for such funds to provide job opportunities for hundreds of thousands of unemployed Tunisians.
The expert said a Tunisian-French program supports Tunisian exports to French markets, providing financial returns in hard currency if the doors for export were wide open to Tunisian institutions.
In 2016, AFD granted Tunisia donations of EUR 4.2 million following the signature of two funding agreements.