Public sector efficiency and political stability are challenges to be overcome in implementing CPF
22/06/2023 18:01, TUNIS/Tunisia

(TAP) - The efficiency of the public sector, political stability and the lack of selectivity in projects are the main challenges to be overcome in implementing the new Country Partnership Framework (CPF) launched by the World Bank Group (WB) with Tunisia on Thursday, said Alexandre Arrobbio, the WB's resident representative in Tunisia.

Speaking at the launch of this new framework between the WB and Tunisia in Gammarth, Arrobbio stressed the importance of ensuring the rapid and effective implementation of this new partnership framework, with new resources of around $500 million per year.

Arrobbio pointed out that the priorities of this new CPF are the creation of quality jobs by the private sector, the strengthening of human capital, the improvement of resilience to climate change and the reduction of carbon emissions.

For his part, Ferid Belhaj, WB Vice President for the Middle East and North Africa, underlined the importance of human capital in this new partnership framework. He pointed out that the WB's projects in this area focus mainly on education, health and social protection.

Regarding the role of the private sector in the Tunisian economy, Belhaj called for opening doors to the private sector by providing companies with a business climate conducive to investment, removing obstacles and reducing red tape.

He recalled that the economies of wealth-creating countries are based on the private sector.

With regard to improving resilience to climate change, Belhaj noted that the ELMED interconnection project between Tunisia and Italy is the first WB project under the new CPF 2023-2027. This project is co-financed by the WB and was the subject of a $268.4 million loan agreement (equivalent to 825.73 million dinars) signed on Thursday between the WB and Tunisia.

In her speech, Prime Minister Najla Bouden, pointed out that the government was counting on the WB's experience in designing circular economy projects, particularly in the field of wastewater treatment, as part of the strategy for low-carbon development that is resilient to climate change.

Samir Saïed, Minister of the Economy and Planning, noted that the calls for tender for the ELMED project, with an investment of €1 billion, will be launched shortly, and the plant is due to come on stream in 2028.

The new Country Partnership Framework between the WB and Tunisia is based on the country's 2023-2025 development plan and its 2035 vision. It has been designed on the basis of the WB's Systematic Country Diagnostic (SCD) and its forthcoming Country Report on Climate and Development.

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