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Tunisia raises fuel prices

Tunisian flag raised up at Belvedere Park in Tunis on 20 March, 2017 [Amine Landoulsi/Anadolu Agency]
Tunisian flag raised up at Belvedere Park in Tunis on 20 March, 2017 [Amine Landoulsi/Anadolu Agency]

Tunisian government yesterday decided to raise fuel prices by about 4 per cent, in an effort to curb its budget deficit and meet reforms requested by the international lenders, local media has reported.

The country’s Ministry of Industry and Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises said in a statement on Saturday that the increase in fuel prices was a result of “the continuing rise in global oil prices.”

“The price of crude oil exceeded $68 per barrel during in late 2018,” the ministry said, adding that the price of a litre of petrol would rise by 0.080 Tunisian dinars to 2.065 dinars ($0.6825).

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The North African country raised petrol prices four times last year, the latest was in September.

Tunis has been implementing several measures under pressure from international lenders, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which agreed on a $2.8 billion loan programme in 2016.

On Wednesday, an IMF delegation arrived in Tunis to review the country’s economic performance, in an attempt to approve the disbursement of a new tranche.

The international lender has been pressing Tunisia to trim its budget deficit and increase fuel and electricity bills to offset a rise in oil prices that is pressuring already strained public finances. The country has dropped into a deep economic slump following the overthrow in 2011 of autocratic leader Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali.

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AfricaIMFInternational OrganisationsNewsTunisia
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