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What is the Tunisian dinar (TND)?

Credit Ratings & Outlook

In the latest credit ratings from December 1970, Moody's gives Tunisia a Baa3 rating, with a negative outlook. Fitch has a negative outlook with a BBB- rating. Finally, S&P last issued a BBB- rating, with a negative outlook.

Sovereign credit ratings play an important part in determining a country’s access to international capital markets, and the terms of that access. Sovereign ratings help to foster dramatic growth, stability, and efficiency of international and domestic markets.

Central Bank Rate

The current central bank interest rate is 3.50%. This is the same as 2011, which was 3.50%.

GDP

In 2010 the total GDP was $44,290,845,562 in US Dollars, while the per capita GDP was $4,198. It grew by 3.70% over the previous year.

Unemployment

The latest unemployment rate for 2009 is 9.99%.

Consumer Price Index

The latest consumer price index for 2010 is 122.56.

Political Structure

The current head of the government is Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali, and the head of state is President Moncef Marzouki (in an executive role).

Currency Details

The Tunisian Dinar (TND) is the currency of Tunisia. It is subdivided into 1000 millimes. The Tunisian Dinar is not convertible into Pound Sterling. The Dinar is soft currency. The convertibility of the Dinar had been a working progress since 1987. Finally, in 1992, convertibility of the Dinar came about for both commercial & investment transactions. While knowledge of the Dinar’s past is scarce, rules regarding exchange of the Dinar are better known. Importation and exportation of the Tunisian Dinar is illegal and this prohibition is strictly enforced; one cannot acquire Dinars outside of the country.  The law provides heavy penalties for offences against exchange-control regulations.

Travel Notes:

There is no limit on the amount of foreign currency you may   bring into the Tunisia. However, if you are going to spend   1000 Dinars or more when you leave, the law requires that   you declare the amount of foreign currency you are carrying to   customs authorities.Upon departure of Tunisia after a short non-resident stay, one   may re-exchange up to one third of the amount of Dinars (up   to a maximum of 100 TND) initially purchased; however,   receipts are required. The amount of foreign currency brought   into Tunisia is unlimited, however the law required declaration   to customs authorities. Keep all the receipts for the currency exchange operations you   make during your stay, as customs authorities may ask for   them at the airport.

Moody’s Rating
Baa2, 17 Apr 2003
S&P Rating
A-

Sovereign credit ratings play an important part in determining a country’s access to international capital markets, and the terms of that access. Sovereign ratings help to foster dramatic growth, stability, and efficiency of international and domestic markets.

What does it look like?

Political Structure

Tunisia’s political structure is a republic, characterized by a solid presidential system and dominated by a unified political party. Since 1987 when he deposed Habib Bourguiba, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali has been in office as President of Tunisia. The nation’s dominating party is the Democratic Constitutional Rally (RCD), which has been the sole legal party for nearly three decades (previously known as the Socialist Destourian Party, PSD). The President of Tunisia is elected for five-year terms with virtually no rivalry in place. The president is in charge of appointing a Prime Minister and a cabinet, both of which are integral parts of enforcing policies and laws. Furthermore, the central government appoints regional and local governments and administrators, largely comprised of consultative mayors and municipal councils. The Chamber of Deputies-the unicameral legislative body-has 182 seats, with one fifth reserved for the opposition. The Chamber is becoming increasingly important as it serves as an arena for debate on national policy, but never originates legislation and almost always passes bills presented by the executive (with minor changes at the most). The judiciary is technically independent, however in political cases tends to respond to executive direction. The military plays virtually no role in politics. As of mid 2005, there are six legal opposition parties.

Prominent Figures

Chief of State President Zine el Abidine BEN ALI (since 7 November 1987)
Head of Government Prime Minister Mohamed GHANNOUCHI (since 17 November 1999)
Cabinet Council of Ministers appointed by the president
Elections president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (no term limits); election last held on 25 October 2009 (next to be held in October 2014); prime minister appointed by the president
Election Results President Zine El Abidine BEN ALI reelected for a fifth term; percent of vote – Zine El Abidine BEN ALI 89.6%, Mohamed BOUCHIHA 5%, Ahmed INOUBLI 3.8%, Ahmed BRAHIM 1.6%; voter turnout 89.4%

Key Economic Factors

Tunisia’s economy is heavily affected by agriculture, mining, energy, tourism, and its manufacturing sectors. Although the government still has heavy control over the economy, in the last decade increased privatization, simplification of the tax structure, and a better approach towards debt has eased government involvement. Inflation has slowly declined since the 1990′s, in part due to the growth in the tourism sector. Trade has also eased many of Tunisia’s economic difficulties, as a relationship with the EU was created. Agreements with the EU have allowed Tunisia to remove trade barriers.

Industry:

petroleum, mining (particularly phosphate and iron ore), tourism, textiles, footwear, agribusiness, and beverages

Agriculture:

olives, olive oil, grain, dairy products, tomatoes, citrus fruit, beef, sugar beets, dates, and almonds

Export Commodities:

textiles, mechanical goods, phosphates and chemicals, agricultural products, hydrocarbons

Import Commodities:

textiles, machinery and equipment, hydrocarbons, chemicals, food

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