AII: Tunisia in top six of major manufacturing countries

(TAP) – Tunisia has been ranked among the top six African manufacturing countries by occupying the 4th position in the first edition of the African Industrialization Index (AII), published on November 24, 2022, by the African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Union and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).


The African Industrialization Index (AII) is an AfDB initiative to strengthen data on Africa’s industrial development. The AII, which covers 52 out of 54 African countries over the period 2010-2021, reviews each country’s industrial development across three dimensions: manufacturing sector performance, direct determinants of manufacturing output (capital and labour), and indirect determinants or the enabling environment, including macroeconomic stability and the quality of policies and institutions.


According to the report, South Africa, which ranks first in the Index, has maintained a very high ranking throughout the 2010-2021 period, followed closely by Morocco, which ranks second. Egypt, Tunisia, Mauritius and Eswatini complete the top six over the period.


The report also notes that many countries have made significant progress in industrial development over the 2010-2021 period. 37 out of 52 African countries have seen their level of industrialisation increase over the past 11 years. The top quintile of the AII ranking includes South Africa, three North African countries (Morocco, Tunisia and Egypt), as well as Mauritius, Eswatini, Namibia, Côte d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea and Senegal.


North Africa is the best-performing sub-region in the AII. Three of its six countries are among the top 10 performers on the Index, with an average score of about 0.7. Morocco, Egypt and Tunisia score well on each sub-component of the AII. These good results reflect a long history of national efforts to promote key industries and build a strong infrastructure, supported by a strengthening of industrial policy over the past decade as governments develop new policy tools to support infant industries and reduce import dependence.


Key industries in the region include inorganic chemical processing, fertiliser manufacturing, automotive, electrical components, and textiles. Libya and Algeria still have some way to go to achieve the goal of non-hydrocarbon diversification. The sub-region benefits from its close proximity to the European Union but would benefit from increased connectivity between its member countries and improved North-South corridors with the hinterland and the rest of the African continent.


The report stresses that the building products industry will be integral to Africa’s development, providing a pathway to accelerated structural transformation, large-scale formal job creation and inclusive growth. However, Africa’s share of global manufacturing has declined to the current level of less than 2%. More proactive industrial policies are considered essential to reverse this trend, but they require in-depth knowledge and a detailed understanding of the constraints and opportunities facing each country.


Source: TAP News Agency