Strong institutions pave the way for reform in Tunisia

Project description

Title: Strengthening the Reform Capacities of Tunisian Institutions (RECAP)
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Tunisa
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Economy, Finance and Investment Support / Ministry of Development, Investment and International Cooperation, Central Bank of Tunisia
Overall term: 2020 to 2023

Context

Since the revolution in 2011, Tunisia has been pursuing an ambitious democratic and economic reform programme. Germany is supporting the country through the Tunisian-German reform partnership. The focus is on reforming the banking and financial system and modernising administration.

The goal of the reform partnership is both to provide greater access to loans and financial services for micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises to allow them to grow and to improve the investment climate in Tunisia by dismantling bureaucratic barriers. Balancing the state finances is also one of the reform objectives of the Tunisian administration.

Adequate institutional and staff competencies are essential if the reforms are to be successful. Some Tunisian institutions still need to build capacity in this respect, which is why many reform processes are currently lagging. This is especially the case with key players such as the Ministry of Development, Investment and International Cooperation (Ministère du Développement, de l’Investissement et de la Coopération internationale, MDiCI), the Central Bank of Tunisia (Banque Centrale de Tunisie, BCT) and the Tunisia Investment Authority (TIA).

The reform partnerships between Germany and selected African countries are part of the Compact with Africa (CwA), which the group of the 20 major industrialised and emerging economies (G20) launched in 2017 under German leadership. The objective of the CwA is to promote private investment in Africa. The reform partnerships are also a core element of the Marshall Plan with Africa .

Objective

The Tunisian institutions are better equipped to implement the planned reforms of the Tunisian-German reform partnerships.

Approach

To build capacity for the successful implementation of reforms, the project works with the participating institutions to define specific measures.

MDICI is receiving support for the creation and use of a digital information management system. This is improving coordination between the international cooperation partners. Its staff are also receiving further training in project management and negotiation skills. 

The project is developing digital services for interested companies to enable the investment authority TIA and other agencies to better support investment projects. At the same time, the staff are receiving further training in investment promotion and investment support.

The project is helping to implement the strategic plan of the Central Bank of Tunisia (BCT) by improving its departmental structure and digitalising the bank’s internal processes. In addition, it is putting in place a forward-looking human resources management system and strengthening internal and external communications.
A flexible advisory fund is supporting other selected institutions within the Tunisian-German reform partnership. The focus is on tailored support to get relevant reforms off the ground.

Results

A roadmap has been drawn up jointly with MDICI to improve financial donor coordination. It includes capacity building measures and a new IT tool.

In cooperation with the investment authority TIA, the project has created a central investors’ platform that is now being further developed. The first six digital services for investors went online in 2019. TIA staff have taken part in advisory sessions and training courses to acquire enhanced knowledge about how to identify potential investors, approach investors and assess investment projects. 

This range of measures has contributed to the fact that in 2019 and 2020, the TIA supported a total of 91 investment applications. These were worth the equivalent of around EUR 1.5 billion and and encompass 27,000 jobs, which are expected to be created.

To implement the Central Bank (BCT) strategic plan, the project has produced a guide to project management in the form of a manual and video. Following analysis of the staff structure, a temporary organisational chart has been drawn up jointly with the BCT. In the area of communications, the BCT has developed its first corporate identity, and executive employees have begun media training.

Last update: April 2021

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