"The European Union (EU) released 55 million euros, nearly 110 million dinars (MTD), in donation as part of its new Economic Recovery Programme (ERP) in Tunisia, to support the assistance measures of the country's transition process," the European Delegation in Tunis announced on Friday in a communiqué.
This programme targets economic growth, reduction of inequalities and improvement of governance.
Signed last September, ERP, which was devised in the very few weeks after the January 14 Revolution, is endowed with a total budget worth 100 million euros, about 200 MTD, as a direct back-up to the State budget, to help Tunisia carry out short-term actions and more structural reforms during the transition period.
ERP mobilises several international players, namely the European Union, the World Bank, the African Development Bank and the French Development Agency, allowing a total financial contribution worth one billion euros.
EU will contribute with donations and loans.
The programme consists in speeding up as much as possible the recovery process of economic growth. The amounts mobilised by EU and the other backers, actually devoted to finance part of the rising State deficit, to help it increase public spending in order to support the economic activity.
Besides, the programme will directly contribute to reduce inequalities thanks to a re-adjustment of public interventions in favour of the underprivileged regions and social classes. It will also help restore infrastructure damaged following the January 2011 events.
In the social field, the programme provides for establishing financial assistance and training for the benefit of jobless higher-education graduates, as part of the Tunisian Job Active Search Programme (AMAL) which has already benefited to 130,000 youths.
It also backs up the improvement of assistance programmes for the needy families and reinforcement of basic public services, particularly basic health ones.
The European Union backs up, through ERP, improvement of public administration's governance and schedules actions in the public procurement field, customs and fiscal administration, to improve transparency, efficiency and equity.