Tunisia has approached several automakers, including Volkswagen AG (VDF) and Toyota Motor Corp. (7203) for the establishment of an assembly line as the country is seeking investment to reduce unemployment, a Tunisian official said.
“We are working to attract automakers, we have done it with Volkswagen,” said Slim Besbes, advisor to the prime minister on investment, who added that the same procedure was undertaken with Toyota. “The obstacle does not lie in the domestic situation, but the international context that is not conducive to investment in the sector.”
Tunisia should be interesting because it already manufactures components used by automotive manufacturers in Europe and has experience in buses assembly, Besbes said in an interview with Bloomberg Businessweek.
Unemployment fell to 16.6 percent at the end of 2012, against 18.9 percent a year earlier, said Besbes. Foreign direct investment rose 75 percent last year, Qatar ranked first among foreign investors, he said.