The African Development Bank (AfDB) has granted Tunisia €60 million (about 196.7 million dinars) funding to enable it to implement the Economic Recovery and Social Inclusion Support Program.
This was announced by the AfDB, following its Board of Directors meeting on July 14.
This financing is part of the AfDB’s contribution to the 2020-2022 multi-donor budget support to Tunisia.
It will support the economic recovery process by improving the investment climate, preserving employment and promoting social inclusion through new mechanisms to address social challenges exacerbated by the COVUD-19 pandemic.
The aim is to improve the efficiency of social spending by streamlining social assistance programs and adopting a more targeted approach to beneficiary populations, the AfDB added.
In fact, some 2.3 million people will benefit from improved social transfers and 470 thousand households with limited income (holders of reduced rate health cards) will be supported, as well as another 260 thousand beneficiaries of permanent cash transfers, to which will be added 400 thousand new non-referred households affected by the crisis.
The funding will also support 230,000 employees threatened by layoffs and exposed to technical unemployment to help preserve their jobs or provide them with social assistance. 1.4 million microcredit applicants will be able to access banking services thanks to the program, it noted.
In its economic component, the project will support the acceleration of reforms to promote rapid recovery of the economy. It aims to remove barriers to investment, accelerate job creation and put in place a new strategic development framework that is more inclusive and more favorable to private investment.
It will also implement the law on self-entrepreneurship and introduce an affirmative action approach in favor of innovative female entrepreneurship, the AfDB explained.
“In the current crisis context, maintaining social balances, protecting jobs and strengthening social inclusion are our top priorities to revive the economy,” said AfDB’s North Africa CEO, Mohamed El Azizi.
“We will do this by supporting job-creating investment throughout the country,” he added, adding that these were the ingredients for a successful exit from the crisis.
For Director of the Bank’s Human Capital, Youth and Skills Development Department, Martha Phiri, “mitigating the socio-economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and supporting a more sustainable and inclusive economic recovery are the AfDB’s priorities to help Tunisia emerge from the crisis.