TUNIS – Tunisia sees $2.78 billion in foreign loans — almost double last year’s external financing needs, to help cover a 2017 deficit expected at 5.4 percent, according to the 2017 budget approved on Friday and published by TAP state news agency.
Last year’s budget expected 2016 foreign lending at $1.45 billion.
The cabinet approved the 2017 budget of 32.7 billion dinars or $14.8 billion, a 12 percent increase from this year’s budget, TAP reported.
The budget sees 2017 growth at 2.3 percent versus a forecast of 1.5 percent for this year. The budget deficit is expected to narrow to 5.4 percent, TAP said, from an expected deficit of 6.5 percent this year.
($1 = 2.2100 Tunisian dinars)
(Reporting by Tarek Amara; writing by Patrick Markey)