International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND
A fragile economy in a complex socio-political environment. Tunisia's political transition advanced, but social discontent remains elevated. After almost stagnating over 2015-16, growth will pick up in 2017 to 2.3 percent helped by tourism and phosphates. Structural deficiencies, an overvalued real exchange rate and weak confidence after the 2015 attacks continue to weigh on investment. Exogenous shocks and policy slippages contributed to widen the current account deficit by more than 10 percent of GDP in the first quarter of 2017. The dinar depreciated by 23 percent in nominal effective terms since end-2015; this and a broad-based rise in prices led the Central Bank to increase its policy interest rate by 75 bps to 5 percent over the last month to contain inflation below 5 percent in 2017.