The Centre for Social Sciences Research and Action (CeSSRA) collaborated with the Tunisian Observatory of Economy (TOE) for a webinar on “IMF and WB reforms of social security systems: the complicit and gradual destruction of inclusive and universal schemes” Date and time: 27 July 2023, 4 to 6 pm Beirut time – 2 to 4 pm Tunisia time In recent years, countries such as Egypt, Tunisia, and Lebanon have turned to the IMF and World Bank for financial assistance. These financial institutions often impose stringent conditions, demanding wide-ranging reforms as prerequisites. These conditions often include structural adjustment programs that revolve around lifting subsidies, reducing public expenditures, liberalizing trade, implementing investment and capital controls, and privatizing state-owned enterprises. These measures have been criticized for their “one-size-fits-all” approach, and failing to reduce inequalities or promote long-term development goals. Indeed, research has shown that they contribute to increasing inequalities and poverty. International financial institutions’ emphasis on targeted assistance have sparked concerns about their potential consequences for social protection systems. This webinar aims to analyze the impact of IMF and World Bank conditionalities on Egypt, Tunisia, and Lebanon’s social security systems, notably discussing the consequences of subsidies removal and targeted cash transfers on inequality, vulnerability, and fundamental rights. Speakers: Fathia Ben Slimane (Tunisian Observatory of Economy) – 08:38 Salma Hussein (Friedrich Ebert Stiftung MENA) – 27:18 Olga Jbeili (Arab NGO Network for Development) – 45:21.

To watch the webinar: click here

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