Tunisia's Prime Minister Youssef Chahed talks during an interview with Reuters in Tunis, Tunisia, September 29, 2016. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souissi
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Tunisia's prime minister plans key talks with unions to hold down state sector wages and sees close to 3 percent economic growth next year from a package of reforms aimed at underpinning the democracy won in the 2011 revolution with economic gains.Youssef Chahed, a French-educated agriculture specialist in office less than a month, is sensitive to how fragile the social peace is in Tunisia but expressed confidence that he could deliver on reforms with his new national unity government.Tunisia faces a debt service payment of $3 billion next year, and the central bank has warned the government may struggle to come up with the $450 million a month it needs to pay public employees.Under Chahed, Tunisia resolved two protests that were costing millions in losses. He had promised a tough line with economic protests over jobs in vital sectors, but in both cases the government reached a financial deal with protesters.
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