Chad shelves bid to cut civil service salaries

The cash-strapped central African nation of Chad has suspended a plan to reduce the salaries of its civil servants, Prime Minister Albert Pahimi Padacke announced on Wednesday.

The plan, announced earlier this month, aims to ease the strains on a budget badly hit by a nearly four-year slump in oil revenues and a rise in borrowing.

Trade unions had angrily opposed the scheme.

Civil service salaries in 2017 totalled 376 billion CFA francs (about 600 million euros/$720 million), roughly the equivalent of the combined revenue from income tax and customs duties, according to official figures given to AFP on Tuesday.

Chad is under pressure to cut costs to meet performance targets under an International Monetary Fund (IMF) aid programme.

The country is one of the poorest in the world. Nearly half of its population lives under the threshold of poverty.

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