“Some 2500 applications for participation in “TUNISIA 2020″ accepted” (Khalil Laabidi)

(TAP) – “Some 2,500 out of 6,000 applications, including 1200 foreign ones, have been accepted till November 22 to participate at the International Investment Conference “Tunisia 2020” scheduled on November 29 and 30,” Foreign Investment Promotion Agency (FIPA) Director-General Khalil Laabidi told TAP.

Laabidi recalled that organisers counted on the participation of 1,200 people at “Tunisia 2020” conference, second event of such a scale held in the country after the Revolution (December 17, 2010- January 14, 2011), with the goal to promote Tunisia as an internationally competitive investment place.

An official opening ceremony, with a political dimension, will be held on November 29, with the participation of only invited persons.

High-ranking foreign political figures including Emirs, Heads of State and Prime Ministers, Ministers, Secretary of States and senior officials of international institutions (IMF, WB, EU…) will take part in this event.

These include, according to Laabidi, the Emir of Qatar, the PMs of Algeria, France and Serbia, MPs from Kuwait, Jordan and Belgium, the former presidents of Germany, Malaysia and Switzerland, the President of the European Investment Bank (EIB), the President of the Arab Fund for Economic & Social Development (AFESD), the Vice-President of World Bank, the Director-General of World Trade Organisation, the Vice-President of the African Union, deputy secretaries-general of the United nations (UN) and the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) and the Secretary-General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)…

Recorded speeches of other prominent figures will be aired during the opening session. “Statements in support for Tunisia are planned during this ceremony…we are expecting more support and co-operation from these statements, but also better investment and project-funding means that would be a mixture between investment funds, donations and loans.”

“It is also possible that additional credits would be granted to Tunisia by donors,” he said, pointing out that “these credits should be granted through preferential financial terms, taking into account the country’s repayment capacity.”

He further recalled that 140 projects will be presented at the conference including 64 public projects, 33 PPP projects and 43 private ones in infrastructure, energy, desalination of water, agriculture, tourism, ICT, health and high-technology industries sectors.

Five continents will be represented in this conference, Laabidi said, stressing that France, Canada and Qatar are Tunisia’s main partner countries in the preparation and organisation of “Tunisia 2020” conference, in addition to other Gulf and European countries.

Asia, China, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea and Australia will also be attending the event.

“Tunisia is back, main message of Tunisia 2020”

“Tunisia is back on the economic scene and will be open for all co-operation opportunities with its partners to reach the highest growth rates, allowing the creation of more jobs,” he said.

“The development plan is a strong message sent by Tunisia with arms open to investment in a win-win approach… the country has implemented the necessary economic pillars (PPP law, investment law, renewable energies law, competition and prices law).”

“Tunisia is expecting from this event to change the country’s stereotyped image acquired after the revolution, that of a country with social, political and security instability. We want to show today that we have overcome this phase thanks to the democratic transition that we, and everyone, consider a success…Tunisia has moved now to an economic transition, a new vision of national economy reflected in the 2016-2020 development plan.”

“The country will also present projects in the 2016-2020 development plan to investors, foreign countries and donors, and show them how its infrastructure will improve in the next period, especially as 70% of infrastructure projects are dedicated to the country’s interior regions.”

“Regarding the investment challenges related to the complicated administrative procedures mentioned by investors, they will be handled thanks to the provisions of the investment law and the economic emergency law, still to be adopted by the House of Peoples’ Representatives (HPR).”

“We will also present Tunisia’s advantages compared to other competitor countries, especially in terms of production factors, i.e. a 20 to 30% cost reduction for investors. Moreover, Tunisia has skills graduates from recognised universities and boasts experience in the ICT, agriculture, automobile, aeronautics and textile industries sectors.

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