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Tunisia: growth at 5.4%, creation of 81,000 jobs and income per capita at 6,554 TD

Two draft budgets are currently under debate in the Chamber of Deputies as part of the budget marathon which began, Saturday, November 27: they are the draft state budget for 2011 budget and the draft economic budget.
Both will be implemented concurrently with the implementation of the objectives of the twelfth development plan (2010-2014), and in accordance, with the priorities of the presidential program “Together We Meet Challenges” for the next five years.

Regarding specifically the state budget for the next year is set at nearly 19,192 million dinars, i.e. an increase of 5% compared to the 2010 estimates.

This draft budget is defined in accordance with the growth of GDP at 5.4% at constant prices, own resources by 6.1%, development of management expenses by 6.3% and development expenses by 7.5%, maintaining the budget deficit at 2.5% of the GDP and reduction of GDP to 39% of public debt.

The amount of resources of the general State budget for 2011 was set at 19,192 million dinars, i.e. a rise of 920 million dinars (+5%), compared to the updated results for 2010.
Budget resources are essentially generated by own resources at 15,240 million dinars (MTD), i.e. 80.3% and loan resources estimated at 3,772 MTD, i.e. 19.7%.

Fiscal resources for 2011 are estimated at 13,213 MTD, i.e. a rise of 5.7% compared with expected 2010 results. These resources are provided at 42% by direct taxation and at 58% by the indirect taxation. These estimates foresee a total rate of fiscal pressure contained within the limits of 19.1% to 19.9%, exclusive of oil taxation.

Non-fiscal revenues for the next year are estimated at 2,207 MTD, i.e. an increase of 175 MTD (+8.6%), compared to the 2010 results. Estimates of the 2011 State budget are set on the basis of an oil barrel at 83 dollars and a dollar exchange rate at 1.500 dinar. They are also calculated on the basis of the adjustment of domestic of prices in the last quarter of 2010 and the planned adjustment of electricity rates early next year.
Loan resources are estimated by taking into account external credits granted (125 million dinars) at 3,772 MTD. These resources were established on the basis of the financing of the budget deficit and considering privatization and grants (1,500 million dinars), as well as on the basis of repayment at 2,272 million dinars of the principal of the public debt for 2011.
The State budget expenses for next year are estimated, exclusive of retrocede loans (125 million dinars), at 19,192 million dinars, compared with 18,272 million dinars, standing at 5% compared with last year.

These estimates were established on the basis the 2009- 2014 Presidential Program’s goals, notably those regarding development of education systems, higher education and scientific research and achieving development projects in regions and improving public services.
The 2011 management expenses are estimated at 10,732 million dinars, i.e. a 6.3% rise compared with 2010.
These expenses are shared out as follows: Wage expenses for next year are estimated at 7,286.4 million dinars, compared with 6,825 million dinars in 2010, standing at a 6.8% rise.
Management expenses are estimated at 828.6 million dinars, compared with 771.2 million dinars in 2010, that is a 7.4% rise. The 2011 intervention expenses –exclusive of subsidization– are estimated at 861.8 million dinars, compared with 834.1 million dinars in 2010.

The 2011 subsidization expenses are estimated at 1,500 million dinars, as regards hydrocarbons, basic products and public transport.
The development expenses for 2011 –exclusive of the expenses of foreign loan granted to public establishments and enterprises– are to stand at 4,818 million dinars, compared with 4,500 million dinars set up in the 2010 Finance Act, that is a rise of 318 million dinars (over 7%).

Outlines of 2011 economic budget

In light of the gradually recovering pace of growth internationally, the development scheme for 2011 is focused on speeding up the development pace and increasing production, while relying on a positive contribution of exports to growth.
This scheme also intends to step up job creations to absorb unemployment, promote development indicators to higher levels and relieve pressure on external payments.

The GDP should grow by 5.4% at constant prices, compared with 3.7% in 2010. Exports, which are one of the major sources of growth, should contribute to it by 40.7% in 2011, compared with 31.1% in 2009.

The share of total productivity of production factors is estimated at 50.2% in the same year, compared with 27.4% in 2010.
Regarding the restructuring of the economy’s funding, the share of external investments would stand at 50.8% of the total external funding of the economy whose rate is estimated at 28% of the total financing needs.
The point is also to rely on national savings at 72%, which is likely to improve the foreign debt rate in 2011, raising it to 34.7% of the national income.
Efforts will also focus on bringing down the public debt rate to 39% of the GDP and lowering inflation rate to 3.5% in 2011, compared with 4.5% in 2010.
Normal growth is expected to resume in 2011, production would increase and employment policy would be boosted. The aim is increase the rate of coverage of additional job demands up to 101.2% to reach 81,000 new jobs, compared with 75,000 jobs created in 2010.

The development scheme foresees an increase in overall investment by 11.3% at constant prices to reach 24.7% of the GDP, encouraging private investment whose share will rise to 58.1% of the overall investments, while foreign direct investments (FDIs) are expected to reach 3,100 million dinars.
Regarding sectoral policies, agriculture and fisheries will grow at 6.7%, while the rate of coverage of food balance would reach 80%.

Human and social development indicators will progress, in such a manner as to ensure sustainability of development and decent life for all social categories and in all regions.
Thus, the general human development indicator is expected to reach 0.790 in 2011, compared with 0.784 in 2010. The per capita income is also expected to rise to 6554 dinars compared with 5505.4 dinars in 2010, while social remittances will be brought to 81.5% of the GDP and the rate of social coverage will be improved to 96.6% Life expectancy at birth would also increase to 74.7% and infant mortality is expected to drop to 15.9 per thousand births, in addition to the reform of the educational, training and higher education systems.

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