Doing Business In Tunisia

  1. Doing Business 2013 ranks Tunisia 50th out of 185 economies, recording a 5 point decrease from last year. This decrease reflects declines in 9 out of 10 indicators.
  2. Of the 5 countries covered by the Investing Across Sectors indicators in Middle East and North Africa, Tunisia has the fewest limits on foreign equity ownership. The country has opened up the majority of the sectors of its economy to foreign capital participation. As a notable exception, the electricity transmission and distribution sectors are closed to foreign ownership. Furthermore, these industries operate under monopolistic market structures with the publicly owned company STEG as the only provider. While foreign capital participation is not restricted by law in electricity generation, the public monopoly of STEG together with a high perceived difficulty of obtaining the required operating license make it difficult for foreign investors to engage. Foreign investors who want to set up a subsidiary in Tunisia (Tunis) will have to allow 19 days and go through 14 different procedural steps, a process that is more complex than the IAB regional and global averages.
  3. Tunisia’s economic freedom score is 58.6, making its economy the 95th freest out of 183 countries in the 2012 Index. Its score is virtually unchanged last year, though there were wide swings in individual categories of economic freedom. Tunisia is ranked 11th out of 17 countries in the Middle East/North Africa region, and its overall score is just below the world average.

Source: World Bank


Visa Information

Nationals of most Western European countries can stay in Tunisia for up to three months without a visa – you just roll up at the port or airport and collect a stamp in your passport. Americans, Canadians, Germans and Japanese can stay up to four months. Other nationalities have to apply for a visa before travel.
Australians and South Africans travelling independently can get a three-month visa at the airport for US$8. Other nationalities need to apply before they arrive; the visa costs US$7 and takes three to four weeks in person or six weeks via post, and the length of stay is up to the embassy.
Israeli nationals are not allowed into the country, apart from on group trips organised from Israel.
Visa extensions
Extending a visa is a process to be avoided. Applications can be made only at the Interior Ministry on Ave Habib Bourguiba in Tunis. They cost US$2 to US$8 (payable only in timbres fiscales, revenue stamps) and take up to 10 days to issue. You’ll need two photos, and may need bank receipts and a facture (receipt) from your hotel, for starters. It’d be easier to leave the country and return to get another three-month stint.
Visas for onward travel
If you’re planning on travelling to Algeria (check travel warnings before you do so) or Libya (difficult) you should apply for visas in your home country.

Business Etiquette

General Business Hours