According to forecasts, energy demand will grow at an annual average rate of 6% in the 11th Development Plan (2007-2011) to reach nearly 32 TWh (terawatt hour) (1TWh = 1000 GWH) in 2021 with an installed capacity of about 7500 MW.
At the end of May 2010, energy indicators show a noticeable increase in the exploration and development efforts compared with the same period of the previous year.
The total number of valid permits through May 2010 amounted to 55 compared with 44 in May 2009.
Thus, 57 national and foreign companies operate today in the field of oil research and exploration. The number of exploration wells also experienced a significant rise, increasing from 3 to 8 in the period 2009-2010.
This period was also marked by the award of two exploration permits “Rafraf” and “Azmour,” in addition to the abandonment of the exploration permit ” Guellala.”
Regarding energy resources, they posted a 4.7% growth compared with the month of May 2009, from 3,201 Ktoe to 3,351 Ktoe. Domestic production increased, in turn, with a rate of around 19%.
As for oil and primary electricity resources they recorded a decline of 6.3% to 9.4%
Demand for energy has experienced a marginal increase compared with the same period of 2009, from 3,093 Ktoe to 3,239 Ktoe.
With regard to natural gas and according to forecasts, Tunisia could become in the long term a natural gas exporting country in case of confirmation of probable and possible reserves.
This perspective is also justified by the achievement of several energy infrastructure development projects, particularly doubling of the capacity of the trans-Tunisian pipeline.
Projects carried out in 2009 such as the Hasdrubal field or the “South Gas” project will help Tunisia achieve a surplus in the gas balance which will reach about 2 Mtoe in 2012 and might provide the opportunity for the country to sell this product in other markets.
Indeed, the year 2009 saw the materialisation of the objective set by the presidential programme to connect 500,000 subscribers to the natural gas network (compared with 250,000 by late 2005), in addition to the setting up of a master plan to develop natural gas infrastructure.
This plan will help connect 70,000 beneficiaries in 2010 compared with 28,000 in 2005.
It aims to connect 75 additional cities to the national network by 2011 to achieve the goal of 800,000 subscribers in 2014.
With regard to renewable energy, the National Programme for Energy Management provides, in the period 2008-2011, for increasing the rate of renewable energy from 1% to 4% by 2011.
With the ongoing projects, Tunisia will reach the maximum possible capacity of power production generated from wind energy to the national power network with a capacity of 240 MW by the end of 2011, compared with 25 MW in 2004.
The capacity of cogeneration projects set up in 2010 is about 10 MW. The total capacity installed at the moment is up to 50.5 MW.
As for energy audit programmes, the first five months of the current year were marked by the signing of 15 new business programmes, ten which were dedicated to the industrial sector, three in the residential sector, one programme dedicated to transport and a second one to tertiary sector.
As regards contracts made and those in progress, they are 40, most of them (32 contracts) in the industrial sector.