Economic growth in Tunisia was 0.8 percent last year. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souissi
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Political divisions in Tunisia's ruling coalition risk undermining economic reforms and paralyzing the government as it tries to revive the country's post-revolution economy and tackle Islamist militancy.The vote on the bill to protect central bank autonomy was just one of the financial overhauls Tunisia's international lenders are demanding to set the North African state's economy on track after five years of upheaval.But for ruling coalition parties to muster only 73 votes of the 150 they control in the 217-member congress underscored how political splits are starting to undermine those efforts.After elections in late 2014, Prime Minister Habib Essid's Cabinet, including ministers from secularist Nidaa Tounes party, Ennahda and other minor parties, has struggled to make progress on economic reforms to match Tunisia's political progress.I held meetings with the four coalition parties in order to avoid the same scenario," Essid said.But it is far from clear whether their positions will unify for new bills, especially with widening political divides among the four, Ennahda, Nidaa Tounes, Afek Tounes and Free Popular Union UPL party.
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