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Italy Pledges 360 million Euros for Tunisia Development Projects - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Tunis- The Italian embassy has said that Rome will contribute to the implementation of Tunisia’s Development Plan for the years 2016-2020, with a sum of €360 million, of which 260 million will be credited, 100 million in the form of a grant as well as additional resources for the reconversion of Tunisia’s debt.

Among the projects included in this Development Plan is ElMed, a strategic electrical inter-connection project between Italy and Tunisia aimed at achieving effective integration of electric power systems between Europe and Africa, the feasibility study of which in 2017 will be co-financed by the Italian Cooperation, the statement said.

Italy, as G7 President in 2017, is committed to supporting Tunisia also at the multilateral level, in particular in the areas of democracy, good governance, investment and sustainable and inclusive growth, added the same document.

Inclusive development and the revival of economic growth are confirmed as decisive factors for the consolidation of the young Tunisian democracy, which is now for Italy more than ever a positive model for the whole Mediterranean region, the statement said.

With a delegation led by State Secretary for Foreign Affairs Benedetto Della Vedova, Italy participated in the two-day International Conference on Investment “Tunisia 2020”, held in Tunis on November 29.

The objective was to revive economic ties between Italy and Tunisia, especially in strategic sectors such as agri-food, infrastructure, energy, education and local and social development.

About 200 Italian economic operators took part in the conference, including representatives of major groups such as ENI, Enel Green Power, Terna, Leonardo-Finmeccanica, Edison, Olimpias-Benetton, Colacem and many others.

Meanwhile, the visit of President of Tunisia Beji Caid Essebsi to Brussels for talks with top European Union officials was largely welcomed.

“Our meetings demonstrate, at the highest level, our commitment to taking our strategic relationship a step further, and at the same time reflect the strength of the ties that unite us and the Tunisian democratic exception in the neighborhood,” The EU council said in a statement.

A next round of talks is expected to be held in April 2017 in Brussels.