Press release of the Central Bank of Tunisia board meeting held 30 April 2013.
At the Beginning of works of the Board, the Governor gave a presentation on the BCT participation in the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) spring meeting during which he met with several high officials in the world of finance both at the international and the regional levels, particularly Ms. Christine LAGARDE, the Fund’s Managing Director. In this framework, the Board showed satisfaction with respect to the good outcome of this participation which was notably crowned with the announcement of conclusion of negotiations regarding a 24- month standby agreement in the amount of 1.75 billion US dollars (corresponding to 2.7 billion dinars) to support the Tunisian Government’s economic and financial reform agenda. This strengthens its mobilization of the required external resources helping to meet the balance of payments and the State budget financing needs.
The Board reviewed, then, recent trends in world economy marked notably by the IMF’s downward review of world economic growth forecasts expected for this year and next year, compared to January 2013 estimates.
As for the Tunisian economy, the Board considered the latest economic growth estimates for the current year which would post 4% due to the expected shrinking in agriculture and fishing as well as the slowdown in the activity pace of manufacturing industries and services.
Given the latest economic indicators, the Board noted contrasting trends in diverse sectors, pointing out an ongoing ever positive pace of industrial activity for the seventh month in a row along with a 2.6% increase in the production index in annual sliding over January 2013, following the positive trend in manufacturing (1.8%) and non-manufacturing industries (6.8%) which profited from a higher energy production, while pressure in the services sector is going on due to the persisting drop in tourism main indicators over March 2013 for the third month in a row. The Board noted, in this respect, and according to recent indicators, investment pace slowdown, both domestic and external and expressed its concern about the impact of this trend on growth and financial balances.
As for the external sector, the Board underlined the ongoing improvement of the current balance situation over the first quarter of 2013. In fact, the current deficit posted 1.8% of GDP against 2.3% a year earlier, following, mainly, drop in the trade deficit, in line with the increase in exports at a more rapid pace than imports (+8.5% and 3.9% respectively) meaning a better rate of coverage by 3.2 percentage points. However, the rise in expenses with respect to reimbursement of the external debt along with lower income from foreign investment caused a decrease in the volume of reserves in foreign currency, down to 10,902 MTD as at 29 April 2013, corresponding to 102 days of import, compared to 11,170 MTD and 104 days of import at the end of the previous month.
Concerning trends in consumer prices, the inflation rate speeded up over March 2013 posting 6.5% in annual sliding against 5.8% last February, in line notably with the increase in foodstuff prices (8.8%) and the recent adjustment in the prices of fuel and energy.
On the monetary level, banks needs for liquidity lessened over April 2013, which contributed to lower BCT interventions on the money market, coming back to their lowest level since the beginning of the year : 3,476 MTD on daily averages till
29 April, against 3,560 MTD in March. The average interest rate on this market carried on with its upward trend to 4.70% over the same period against 4.33% in the previous month, in line mainly with the decisions taken by the BCT Board during its previous meetings, notably the recent increase in the key interest rate so as to counterbalance increasing inflationary pressure.
While analyzing the banking sector activity, the Board noted a 2.3% increase of the outstanding balance of deposits over the first quarter of 2013: a more rapid pace than that recorded over the same period of 2012 and 2010 (2.1% and 1.7% respectively). This increase concerned deposit certificates and savings accounts. On the other hand, financing of the economy made, over the same period, a 1.8% progress compared to 2.4% over the same period of 2012.
In light of these trends, the Board expressed its concern about the persistence of inflationary pressure and its impact on the competitiveness of the national economy, particularly on some export-oriented sectors, in a context which remained marked by a weak domestic and foreign investment. In addition, the Board reiterated its call upon all intervening parties to double their efforts so as to better monitor factors feeding prices increase, particularly the improvement of distribution channels, and decided to keep unchanged the key interest rate of the Central Bank of Tunisia.
(For more information on the economic and financial situation, you can refer to the Central Bank of Tunisia website www.bct.gov.tn )
Communique: modifying the margins applied to 24-hour standing facilities.
Press release of the Central Bank of Tunisia Executive Board meeting held on 27 February 2013
News release of the Central Bank of Tunisia on external debt situation and outlook.
Press release of the Central Bank of Tunisia Executive Board meeting held on 30 January 2013
Issue of a debenture loan for an amount of 25 billion yens on the japanese market
Further information of the Central Bank of Tunisia
THE NATIONAL ECONOMIC AND FINANCIAL SITUATION: MAIN TRENDS UP TO 26 JUNE 2012.
Finalization of US$ 500 million Quatari borrowing in the form of a private placement
The Central Bank of Tunisia informs that it has finalized on 18 April 2012 a borrowing from Qatar in the form of a private placement for an amount of 500 million Us dollars (about 750 million dinars) on behalf of the Tunisian State at the following conditions:
Interest rate: 2.5% payable annually
Maturity: 5 years
Maturity date: 18 April 2017
Payment date: 18 April 2017 all at once