TUNIS, Tunisia – The Africa Finance Corporation (“AFC”) has welcomed Tunisia as its 34th member state. Tunisia’s accession brings the total number of North African member states of the AFC to three, with Morocco and Egypt becoming members in 2021, deepening the infrastructure provider’s engagement with a vital gateway to Africa. Tunisia’s strategic geographic position means it is an important transit route for natural gas exports from Africa to Europe.
AFC has been invested in Tunisia for some time to enable the country to develop its key economic sectors and support the creation of high skilled jobs. In 2017, AFC invested US$37 million in the development of the Halk El Menzel offshore oil concession block in Northern Tunisia. The project has been especially critical in providing the energy required for transport, installation, start up and commissioning, first well drilling including acquisition of critical production installations, floating storage and offloading units, repair, upgrade of the existing buoy, supply of topside facilities and completion of a wellhead platform. More recently, AFC signed a Memorandum of Understanding in 2020 with the Tunisia Africa Business Council aimed primarily at opening up AFC financing to Tunisian companies to allow for the development of core infrastructure as a pillar for economic growth in Tunisia and the rest of Africa.
Commenting on Tunisia’s accession, AFC President, and CEO, Samaila Zubairu stated: “I am delighted to welcome the Republic of Tunisia as the newest member of AFC. As AFC celebrates 15 years of operations, we are committed to broadening our impact as the reliable and resilient bridge to a prosperous African future by delivering instrumental infrastructure that increases productivity and drives economic growth and sustainable development. We look forward to supporting Tunisia to unlock its next phase of growth and job creation”.
Minister of Economy and Planning, Hon. Samir Saied also commented: “The government’s current priorities are political stability, economic recovery and diversification, and sustainable growth. Significant progress in policy reforms has been made by the government to encourage investment in the country as we see private sector funding and support to be pivotal in achieving this goal. AFC’s track record bodes well for us as we see the AFC as partners that would work with us to deliver on bankable infrastructure projects in sectors with high growth potential and great development impact”.