TUNISIA

Conventional Name: Republic of Tunisia (Al Jumhuriyah at Tunisiyah)

Etymology: from the ancient Tynes of the Punic era

Capital: Tunis.

Surface area: 163.610 km²

Comparison with a European country : about 5 times the size of Belgium

Administrative Divisions: 23 governorates.

Population (2012): 10’732’900

Population density (2012): 65,6 inhabitants/km²

Young people under 15 Years Old (2011): 23,2%

Annual population growth (2011): 0,978%

Fecundity rate (2011): 2,077

Life expectancy (2011): 75

Infant mortality (2011): 26,9‰

Urban population (2010): 67%

Illiteracy rate (2005): men 16,6% ; women 34,7 %

Language: Arabic and French.

Ethnic background: Arabs: 98%

Religions : Sunni Muslims 99%, Christian, Jewish and Other

HDI (Human Development Indicator, UNDP 2008): within the 177 countries selected in the report Tunisia is ranked 91 (rate 0,766 middle development level)

Currency: 1 Tunisian dinar (TD) = 1.000 Millimes (1 €uros = 1,73 dinar, July 2008 )

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) (2011): 46’360’000’000 US $

DGP per capita (2011): 9600 $

Annual growth: (2010) : 3,7%

Unemployment Rate (2011): 18%

Labour Force by Economic Sector of Activity: agriculture 13.9%, industry 32.2% and services 53.9%

Industries: Petroleum, mining (phosphate and iron ore), tourism, textiles, footwear, food, beverages

Agricultural products: Olives, grain, dairy products, tomatoes, citrus fruit, beef, sugar beets, dates, almonds

Exports (2010): 1’643 billions US $

Imports (2010): 2’101 billions US $

Total External Debt (2010): 2’309 billions US $

Major Trading Partners: France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Belgium

Member i.a. of: League of Arab States, Maghreb Arab Union, W.T.O. , Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC)

Parties to i.a. Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), Chemical Weapons Convention (CWP).

Year of independence year: 1956 (from France)

Admitted in the United Nations in: 1956

State nature: Unitary republic

Regime nature: Presidential

Head of State (President): Moncef ben Mohamed Bedoui-Marzouki

Prime Minister: Ali Larayedh

Minister of Defence :  Rachid Sabbagh

Minister for Foreign Affairs: Othman Jerandi

Minister of Interior: Lofti Ben Jeddou

Situation since 2011:

Demonstrations begun in Tunis in December, 2010, which disputed the high unemployment, the corruption, the generalized poverty and the high prices of foodstuffs, degenerated in January, 2011 peaking in uprisings, which led to hundreds of deaths. On January 14th, 2011 the Tunisian President Ben Ali, the same day as he spread(pushed aside) the government, fled the Country and, from the end of January, 2011, a  » government of national unity » was formed. The elections for the new Assembly Constituent Assembly took place at the end of October, 2011 and in December, won by the activist of human rights, Moncef Marzouki, appointed as Acting president. The Constituent Assembly assembly began to draft a new constitution in February, 2012 and aimed at making it ratify at the end of the year.
In March, 2013, Ali Laradeyh replaces Ahmed Jebali and forms a government with the outgoing majority, as well as independents who take the posts of the kingly ministries to calm the anger of the criticisms of the Islamists of Ennahda. He promised to withdraw before the elections which should be held, after many adjournments, at the end of 2013.

Sources (Figures): L’Etat du Monde 2003 (La Découverte), CIA World Factbook 2004, Arab Human Development Report 2002, l’Etat du Monde 2007 (La Découverte)