Turkey giving Tunisia $100M to stave off crisis
By Rizwan Khatik - Fri Jun 08, 12:11 pm
Turkey will give Tunisia $100 million in aid to help it overcome its social and economic difficulties, a Tunisian official announced Thursday, even as an international analysis group warned about a brewing crisis in the North African country.
Tunisia’s Economy Minister Ridha Saidi said an accord was signed between the two countries during the World Economic Forum being held in Turkey. The deal also includes a $400 million low interest loan.
Saidi said that a total of $600 million in aid has been pledged by a number of countries, which would help Tunisia meet its financial obligations. Another $100 million aid grant is also expected from the U.S., he added.
The International Crisis Group warned in a report Wednesday that Tunisia’s government has been unable to address the desperate economic situation that helped spark the popular uprising that overthrew its ruler last year and there is a risk of a new social explosion.
In its report, the Brussels-based organization said the government needs to do more to deal with the problems of rising unemployment, regional economic discrepancies and corruption.
“It so far has been unable to address them rapidly enough and is failing to quell the impatience of workers and unemployed youth who expect to reap the fruits of their involvement in past struggles,” said the report. “Economic grievances are churning right below the surface. They could once again reach full boil.”