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Chahed denies any intention to change government line-up (interview)

Published the:  26/02/2018

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(TAP) Prime Minister Youssef Chahed denied, Sunday night, in an interview with the national TV channel "Al watania 1" any intention on his part to change the government line-up at the moment, saying that "the success of the country is inherent to political stability."

 In response to a question about the call of the Tunisian General Labour Union (UGTT) to pump fresh blood into the government, the PM pointed out that the Union as a signatory to the Carthage Document has the right to claim this change, adding that this decision is his alone, wondering if those calling for change have an alternative programme and specific objectives, such as those of his government.

"At this stage, the country is recording positive indicators that are almost green, particularly in the fields of exports, textile and manufacturing," he indicated, adding that the unemployment rate has dropped from 31.6 % to 29.6% since he has taken office in 2016.

Regarding the war proclaimed by his government against corruption, Youssef Chahed assured that it is not a selective war and that many of the criticisms addressed to the Government of National Unity are explained by this war against corruption.

"The government has supported the economic and financial judiciary pole," said Chahed, adding that his government has struck a blow in war against grand corruption and is carry on its combat against petty corruption.

In addition, the prime minister underlined that the government's strategy is moving towards the digitisation of the administration to alleviate bureaucratic difficulties, explaining in this regard, that contrary to popular belief, some foreign investments had failed because they had not been "serious" and had not met legal conditions and not because of the obstacles related to administrative procedures.

Regarding the classification of Tunisia on certain blacklists, Chahed pointed out that the report of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) had been drafted on the basis of data dating from 2015.

Chahed has not ruled out the possibility of seeing Tunisia appear on new blacklists, especially with the case of the Franco-Tunisian bank that dates back to 1989.

In another connection, the premier said that the dismissal of Central Bank of Tunisia (BCT) governor Shedly Ayari is justified, imputing to the Tunisian Financial Analysis Commission and the BCT a part of the responsibility in this classification.

As regards the mining basin issue and the interruption of phosphate production, Youssef Chahed assured that his government advocates the path of dialogue and that the situation will soon be resolved, thanks to the involvement of all actors and stakeholders.

At another level, the PM assured that the draft law on audiovisual communication is being examined by the House of People's Representatives.