Federal Development Minister Müller on a visit to a textile factory in Bizerte

Priority area Sustainable economic development Creating opportunities

Given Tunisia's high unemployment rate among young people, it is particularly important to create jobs and thus give the young people prospects for the future. Until now, a shortage of training opportunities, a lack of access to financial services and excessive bureaucracy have been acting as a curb on entrepreneurial activities.

German development cooperation activities therefore focus on promoting SMEs and business start-ups, export activities, innovation, and vocational education and training.

Financial cooperation measures primarily benefit micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs). KfW, for instance, provides reduced-interest loans to Tunisian banks, which they in turn can use to give loans to micro, small and medium-sized enterprises. And Tunisia is receiving support to help it establish sovereign guarantee mechanisms with a view to protecting the banks against the risk of default. Technical Cooperation measures are focused on supporting the implementation of the investment act that was passed in 2016. For instance, the country's new investment authority is receiving support.

Agricultural measures and a Green Innovation Centre are helping small farmers join together to create producer groups and thus tap into new earning opportunities.

An apprentice in the GIZ training container in Tunis, where craftsmen are trained

An apprentice in the GIZ training container in Tunis, where craftsmen are trained

An apprentice in the GIZ training container in Tunis, where craftsmen are trained

Center for Digital Transformation

A new Center for Digital Transformation has been established which is to pool German-Tunisian cooperation activities in the field of digital technology. It supports companies in the development of customised digital solutions and promotes the creation of jobs in the IT sector. It also provides advisory services for the Tunisian government with regard to digital transformation, thus also creating a link with activities in the priority area of administrative reforms.

Special Initiative on Training and Job Creation

The BMZ's special initiative is aimed at promoting private investment in Africa and thus creating job and training opportunities. To this end, the BMZ is working closely with German businesses and is promoting practice-oriented partnerships between universities and businesses. The focus in Tunisia is on the automotive and aviation industry and the digital economy.

Tunisia: production of electronic components for the automotive industry

Tunisia: production of electronic components for the automotive industry

Tunisia: production of electronic components for the automotive industry

Results – selected examples

Between 2011 and 2019 some 88,000 people benefited from support from projects funded by the BMZ which helped them find work, either employed or self-employed. Germany's development cooperation activities also helped to secure or create new jobs in some 600 MSMEs with up to 200 workers each. In addition, by 2019 some 95,200 people had benefited from training or upskilling.

Tunisian-German Centre

The Tunisian-German Centre for Jobs, Migration and Reintegration in Tunis was opened in March 2017 by German Development Minister Gerd Müller. It is an important provider of advisory services regarding employment, further training, legal migration and voluntary return. It supports for instance Tunisian migrants returning from Germany by helping them to find jobs and training courses, providing information on further training opportunities and assisting them in starting their own business. In addition, the centre provides information about legal options for labour migration to Germany and about the dangers involved in irregular migration. In September 2019, a branch office was opened in Sfax.