Tunis - Saudi Arabia has pledged financial aid to Tunisia worth about $830 million, Tunisian Prime Minister Youssef Chahed told reporters on Saturday after a visit to Saudi Arabia.
Chahed said that $500 million was expected to finance the budget, $230 million to finance foreign trade and about $100 million to finance projects, without elaborating.
Last month, Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman visited Tunisia, where he met with Tunisian President Beji Qaid Al Sebsi to improve cooperation on the “economy and finance, investment promotion and security and military cooperation to counter extremism and terrorism” a presidency statement later said.
Tunisia is struggling to cut its budget deficit, stabilise falling foreign currency reserves and manage expectations of international lenders demanding reforms such as trimming the public wage bill.
The economy has been in turmoil since autocrat Zine Al Abidine Bin Ali was toppled in a 2011 uprising sparked by anger at unemployment, poverty and record levels of inflation.
Under pressure from the International Monetary Fund, Prime Minister Chahed has aimed to cut the budget deficit to about 4.9 percent of GDP this year from 6.2 percent last year.