Tunisia – Citizens complain of high cost of transportation after rise in fuel prices

52

Location: Tunis – Tunisia
Language: Arabic
Duration: 00:04:59
Sound: natural
Source: A24 in Tunis
Restrictions: A24 subscribers
Date: 02/12/2022

Storyline:

Citizens complain of the rise in cost of public transport and fuel in Tunisia, after the Ministry of Transport announced on Thursday its decision to amend public transport tariffs.

The Ministry of Transport announced Thursday its decision to increase public transport fares, which will come into effect on December 15.

Citizens said this decision will negatively affect their economic conditions, indicating that raising the prices of fuel and public transport will lead to an increase in prices of commodities, which will in turn exacerbate their financial difficulties.

Economists attributed the successive increases in fuel prices to the tendency of Tunisian government to completely stop fuel subsidies by the end of December next year, in accordance with conditions of the International Monetary Fund in order to obtain financial loans.

Shotlist:

  • Soundbite (Abdul Salam Al-Harshi – Economist):
    “The increase in fuel prices in December coincides with the meeting of the Board of Directors of International Monetary Fund, as the government has pledged, according to some sources that fuel subsidies will be completely stopped by the end of December 2023. I believe recent increase in prices of public transport and taxis is the Tunisian government sending a signal to the Board of Directors of International Monetary Fund to say it is abiding by the conditions provided for the administration to grant the loan, without which the situation in Tunisia will be very critical
  • Soundbite (Tawfiq – Institute director):
    “This increase will affect several other sectors, because the increase in fuel prices will start a chain reaction of increases in all prices. The situation is turning from bad to worse. Citizens are very tired, their income is not enough to cover costs, which has caused financial difficulties for all. Some people are forced to borrow money and others live off of leftovers. Poverty has become an obvious issue. People try to get by, but unexpected increases in prices affect society, and could lead to major shifts.”
  • Shots of gas stations in Tunis.
  • Soundbite (Hajjaji Salem – Delivery worker):
    “I am one of people most affected by the increase in fuel prices, since I buy a lot of fuel for my motorcycle, which I use for my work in delivery service. This increase has occurred four or five times this year, and there is talk that by the end of December it will reach about three dinars for the price of a liter. In Tunisia, increase in prices of fuel leads to increase in prices of other commodities, there is not consideration for citizens’ purchasing power.”

Soundbite (Hammadi – Retired teacher):
“From what I heard, the dialogue with the International Monetary Fund is about stopping subsidies completely, not only for fuel, but everything. Life right now is expensive, we are struggling with high level of inflation. Experts have confirmed that our wages today represent only 40% of wages from 15 years ago. Stopping fuel subsidies means increase in prices of gas, transportation and everything else.”

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