Tunisia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Khemaies Jhinaoui and Canadian Minister of International Trade François-Philippe Champagne met and discussed means to advance the current negotiations towards a Foreign Investment Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA).
During the two-day meetings in Canada, on June 18 and 19, both parties agreed to establish an equal strategic partnership in promising, cost-effective and high value added areas, such as artificial intelligence, modern technologies, higher education, scientific research and the tourism sector.
On the occasion of this visit, ministers announced Canada’s funding of $8.6 million to increase women’s participation in leadership roles in Tunisian municipalities and to protect Tunisia’s borders from threats of terrorism and illicit trafficking.
The Tunisian minister sought to emphasize that Tunisia has the right elements, human potentials and high qualifications that enable it to serve as an investment and commercial pole in the Middle East and the African continent.
Jhinaoui referred to the various privileges and incentives adopted by Tunisia to investors in various sectors.
He highlighted the noticeable improvement in economic indicators and the availability of infrastructure, making Tunisia an important investment pole in the region.
Tunisia has earlier inaugurated a direct air route with Canada, which businessmen and investors in both countries have seen as an important opportunity to boost trade and tourism.
Bilateral trade relations still need several new incentives, and the value of trade between the two countries did not exceed $212 million in 2016, which is very low compared to the enormous potential existing in both countries.
Tunisian exports to Canada include olive oil, textile products, footwear and petroleum materials.
Notably, Tunisia is the sixth market for Canada, and the Tunisian economy relies heavily on the Canadian market to provide grains.