On 22nd October, over 100 delegates joined us at the offices of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) for the Tunisia-UK Trade & Investment Forum 2019. Following on from the event in 2018, this forum was led by HE Marouane Abassi, Governor of the Central Bank of Tunisia, who delivered the keynote address at the outset of the day. Representing the UK Government, Conor Burns MP, Minister of State at the UK Department for International Trade, delivered a message about not only the historically ancient trading that has occurred between the UK and Tunisia but also, more importantly, about the bright future of the bilateral relationship, with Tunisia being the first North African country to sign a continuation agreement with the UK.
They were joined by HE Nabil Ben Khedher, Tunisian Ambassador to the UK and HMA Louise De Sousa, British Ambassador to Tunisia along with Mehdi Ben Abdallah representing the Tunisian British Chambers of Commerce (TBCC) and Jurgen Rigterink the First Vice President of the EBRD.
The first plenary of the day covered the investment preparedness and economic environment in Tunisia in general and specifically where it comes to UK businesses with UKEF having up to £2 billion of credit export cover available for Tunisia. This was then followed by a panel on the exciting ICT opportunities there are available in the country and a short panel discussing the Energy sector.
Our thanks to the Embassy of Tunisia and the Tunisian British Chambers of Commerce (TBCC) for all their work on the event and a special thank you to the sponsors; Clarke Energy, De La Rue, Tunisair and our research partner; Oxford Business Group.
08.45-09.35: Opening Session
Atam Sandhu, CEO, DMA
HE Nabil Ben Khedher, Tunisian Ambassador to the UK
HMA Louise De Sousa, British Ambassador to Tunisia
Mehdi Ben Abdallah, President, Tunisian British Chamber of Commerce (TBCC)
Jurgen Rigterink, First Vice President, EBRD
09.35-09.40: Video “Invest in Tunisia”
09.40-10.00: Keynote Address
HE Marouane Abassi, Governor of the Central Bank of Tunisia
Conor Burns MP, Minister of State, Department for International Trade
Paul Arkwright, CEO of the UK-Africa Investment Summit
10.30-11.00: Coffee/Tea Break
11.00-12.30: Tunisia’s Economic Outlook & FDI Opportunities
Abdelbasset Ghanmi, Director General, Foreign Investment Promotion Agency (FIPA)
Samira Ben Sik Ali, Director, Tunisian General Institution for the Public-Private Partnerships (IGPPP)
Noureddine Hajji, 1st Vice President of the TBCC/ Ernst & Young Managing Partner
Carla Senatore, International Business Development Office, UK Export Finance
12.30-13.30: Networking Lunch
13.30-14.45: Session 1: Spotlight on Tunisia as an ICT Hub
Omar Triki, New Partnership Manager, Smart Tunisia
Mohamed Fetah Krichen, CEO, Technopark of Sfax
Alexander Paine, Associate Director, SME Finance and Development, EBRD
Hichem Turki, General Director, “Novation City”
14.45-15.40: Session 2: Opportunities in Energy and Renewables
Gabriel de Lastours, Senior Banker, Associate Director – Energy, EBRD
Sahbi Amara, Africa Director, Clarke Energy
15.40-15.45: Closing Remarks