The Saudi Development Bank has lent Tunisia TND 230mn (USD 150mn) to help build 20,000 affordable housing units, state news agency TAP reported. The 20-year facility holds a five-year grace period.
The first phase includes constructing 4,000 residential units in seven provinces including Ariana, Ben Arous, Nabeul, Zaghouan, Manouba, Sousse and Jendouba. The second phase reportedly implies building 16,000 housing units in other governorates.
Strong local demand for affordable housing is boosting the construction sectors’ output and related contribution to Tunisia’s GDP growth. Construction output also helped offset falling agriculture output, which cut the GDP growth to 2.7% y/y in Q1 from 4.0% in Q4 2012.
Strong manufacturing activity, mainly food processing, textiles and construction, also helped Tunisia's industrial production grow 2.2% y/y in January-March 2013.
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