French companies in Tunisia have increased their workforce by 30% over past five years (Survey)

“French companies established in Tunisia have recorded a remarkable increase of almost 30% in their workforce between 2016 and 2021, which underlines their important role in the creation of local jobs”, according to a survey conducted jointly by the regional economic service of the French Embassy in Tunisia and the Tunisian Committee of French Foreign Trade Advisors.
According to this survey, conducted between October 1, 2022 and February 15, 2023 on a representative sample of 100 French and Franco-Tunisian companies established in Tunisia, these companies employed an average of 466 people in 2021, compared with 366 in 2016. According to the same source, these companies employ almost exclusively Tunisian staff, with 91% of them employing fewer than two expatriates. Although some companies, particularly those operating in the IT sector, have reported a large number of departures in recent years, the fact remains that, overall, French companies are faced with a low level of workforce renewal (in the order of 11% per year on average).
According to the majority of the companies surveyed, this low figure can be explained in part by the “privileged” working environment offered by French companies in Tunisia, as well as their stability and longevity.
The survey also aims to highlight the role of French companies in the development of the Tunisian economy.
It shows that 34% of these companies invest more than 3% of their turnover in research and development, while 67% of them have an activity that has already led to a transfer of technology to Tunisia.
Moreover, “in 69% of cases, the activity of French companies has helped to strengthen Tunisia’s position in terms of respect for quality norms, certifications and international standards”.
The survey also shows that “85% of the companies surveyed have resorted to subcontracting, which is likely to encourage the development of employment and the upgrading of local subcontractors thanks to specifications that emphasise quality of service and compliance with international standards”.
In addition, “more than half of the companies have built partnerships with Tunisian higher education establishments, particularly engineering or technology schools”.
On another level, the survey highlighted the commitment of French companies to sustainable development. Most of them have implemented a policy of “social and environmental responsibility” (SER).
As regards the fight against regional disparities, “almost a third of French companies said they had increased their efforts to promote rural and local development. This is reflected in their support for young people by renovating and equipping schools”.

Source: Agence Tunis Afrique Presse (TAP)

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