Econostrum | Economic News in the Mediterranean

France provides €900m in loans and grants to Tunisia

Written by Frédéric Dubessy on Friday, October 23rd 2020 à 14:15 | Read 868 times

Jean-Yves Le Drian signed several commitments with Hichem Méchichi in Tunis (photo: Presidency of the Tunisian government)
Jean-Yves Le Drian signed several commitments with Hichem Méchichi in Tunis (photo: Presidency of the Tunisian government)
TUNISIA / FRANCE. Jean-Yves le Drian's visit to Tunis on Thursday 22nd October 2020, where he notably met Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi, concluded with a series of announcements. The French Minister of Foreign Affairs confirmed the aid promised to Tunisia with the payment of a first tranche of €100 million.

French President Emmanuel Macron has already committed, in June 2020 during the visit to Paris of his Tunisian counterpart Kaïs Saïed, to a three-year framework agreement worth €350 million to "support Tunisian public policies in various fields", according to Jean-Yves Le Drian. Particularly in the areas of social protection, governance of public companies, access to the financial sector and urban mobility. The funds will be released by Agence Française de Développement (AFD) over the period 2020-2022 with a first tranche of €150M (including the €100M mentioned above) and then two others, subject to the progress of reforms, of €100M each in 2021 and 2022.

At the same time, Paris will help the country in its fight against the pandemic by delivering €500,000 worth of medical equipment to Tunisia, including masks, reagents for tests and nineteen respirators for the medical transfer of patients. Jean-Yves Le Drian also says he is ready to finance the construction of a hospital in Gafsa.

France is also to provide €38m in loans - plus €1m in grants to Sonede (Tunisia's national water operating and distribution company) - for the water treatment plant in Bjaoua (western suburbs of Tunis) designed to secure the drinking water supply in Greater Tunis.

Jean-Yves Le Drian also indicated that the third meeting of the Tunisian-French Higher Council for Cooperation would be held in Tunis in March 2021.

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