The goal of the Tunisian central bank is to maintain a stable dinar so that the economy can function competitively abroad. Since the end of 1995 the government has gradually devalued the dinar against the U.S. dollar, French franc, Italian lira, and German mark to help Tunisian exporters be competitive abroad. In July 2000 US$1 was equal to 1.186 Tunisian dinars, and 1 EU euro was equal to 1.265 Tunisian dinars.
In 1996 a foreign exchange crisis occurred when Tunisia's foreign-currency reserves fell to alarmingly low levels. This problem was an important reason for the adoption of the IMF structural adjustment program . Since 1995 foreign reserves have fluctuated between US$1.6-2.2 billion and in January 2000 rose to an all-time high of US$2.3 billion.