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Tunisia: German investors capitalize on ”New Tunisia”

The Foreign Investment Promotion Agency and the Tunisian-German Chamber of Industry and Commerce “AHK Tunisia,” in collaboration with the Association of German Chambers of Commerce “DIHK” held, on Monday in Tunis, the first Tunisian-German economic Forum in Tunis.

Thirty German businessmen active in the field of mechanical engineering, electronics, chemicals, energy and construction were present at the meeting which aims to present to the German the new trends of Post-Revolution Tunisia, its development and business opportunities to make contacts for potential partnerships.

Mrs. Dagmar Ossenbrink, AHK Tunisia Director-General said German companies reiterate their confidence in Tunisia, adding that 104 new members have joined the Tunisian-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (AHK Tunisia), since January 14, 2011.

She also said that Tunisia offered German investors a market which is easy to define, a diversified industry and a geo-strategic location that opens up access to Arab and African markets.

Speaking of the Tunisian-German economic relations, she said that, in 2010, Tunisia was Germany’s first trade partner in the Maghreb region and that Germany is a reliable partner that has long-term interests.

German companies, she added, are interested in the sectors of industry, infrastructure, services, health, agriculture, food industry, renewable energy and environment technologies.

During a news conference held on the sidelines of the Forum, Mr. Martin Wansleben, Director-General of the Association of German Chambers of Commerce (DIHK), expressed admiration at the Tunisian Revolution, adding that Tunisia is on the right path to democracy and freedom.

“The new Government is called to present strategies for the next period in order to encourage businessmen to invest more in Tunisia,” he said.

Mr. Raouf Ben Debba, AHK Tunisia Chairman, said that this structure has established contacts with 700 companies coming under German chambers of commerce and industry to encourage them to invest in Tunisia, pointing out that three companies already voiced commitment to settle in Tunisia.

Answering a question on concerns about the rise of Islamist party “Ennahdha” Horst Wolfram Kerll, German Ambassador in Tunisia said that “German companies in Tunisia are very reassured.

“We hope that the party does not impose a constitution that repeals certain freedoms such as freedom of belief and individual liberty,” he said.

The first Tunisian-German forum has led to a fruitful discussion where German investors spoke about the good investment climate in Tunisia. It should be noted here that the current democratic transition marked by strong signals, such as the removal of obstacles to freedom of expression, the recognition of many parties and associations, the dissolution of the former party-state confirm the Tunisian people’s will to strengthen its democratic aspirations, which is guarantor of transparency throughout the economy.


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