President Ben Ali pledges decisive steps to promote exports and investments
In his address at the 14th congress of the Tunisian Industry, Trade and Handicrafts Union (UTICA), Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali pledged to make serious economic reforms in the coming three years in order to meet his goals of promoting exports and investments and boosting competitiveness of local firms. The president said the profit tax will be decreased from 35% to 30%. Additionally, the annual ceiling for foreign investments without special authorisation being required will be hiked from 300,000 dinars to one million dinars. For exporting enterprises, the cap will be 3 million dinars.
The president also said domestic companies will no longer need permission to increase their capital and that Tunisia will allow non-residents to freely manage their corporate accounts and have easier access to short-term borrowing of dinars or foreign currency. Other measures discussed were simplifying customs procedures and a pilot programme for establishment of logistic zones, a type of free-trade area, across the country.
Ben Ali's speech was heartily welcomed by UTICA members who called on him to seek re-election in 2009. (TAP, La Presse)
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