In Tunisia, political tensions continue to run high as President Kais Saïed moved forward with his constitutional reform plan. Following the announcement of the final results of the 25 July referendum, the new national charter was recently published in the official gazette and came into force. However, the contentious conditions under which the referendum took place, and some parts of the new constitution have sparked uncertainties about the vote’s legitimacy and the country’s future institutional architecture.
While President Saïed has kept focusing on a constitutional reform project that excluded several political parties and civil society organisations, Tunisians remain particularly concerned with the country’s reeling economy and mounting food prices. Amidst high inflation, ingrained unemployment, and shortages of key subsidised goods, the government is negotiating with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to reach an unpopular agreement on a $4 billion bailout package aimed at thwarting the country’s financial meltdown.
What sort of changes has the new constitution introduced? What institutional system would the new charter establish for the country? What are the prospects for Tunisia’s political and economic stability? What is the current state of negotiations with the IMF, and how will the government address the socio-economic and financial challenges in the coming months?
Emna Ben Arab | Assistant Professor, University of Sfax
Giulia Cimini | Assistant Professor, University of Bologna; Research Fellow, Gerda Henkel Stiftung
Sarah Yerkes | Senior Fellow, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Francesco Cavatorta | Professor of Political Science, Université Laval