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International convention and customs procedures of Tunisia

International Conventions
Member of the World Trade Organization (WTO)
Party to the Kyoto Protocol
Party to the Washington Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora
Party to the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal
Party to the Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer
Party to the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls For Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies
Party to the International Coffee Agreement
International Economic Cooperation
Tunisia is a member of the following international economic organisations: IMF, Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development (AFESD), ICC, Arab Monetary Fund (AMF), WTO, G-77, Arab League, among others. For the full list of economic and other international organisations in which participates Tunisia click here. International organisation membership of Tunisia is also outlined here.
Non Tariff Barriers
Although Tunisia liberalised its import regime during negotiations with the World Trade Organization, a certain number of restrictions still exist. About 3% of goods, such as agricultural products, automobiles and textiles, need an import licence issued by the Ministry of Trade. There are also some quotas, especially for consumer goods in competition with local industry. To obtain these licences, a certain number of documents are required. These documents are the commercial contract (or other equivalent document) and  information about the contracting parties, the products, their origin and where they come from. The licences are valid for a year in principle; however, as the decision needs to be made by the Ministry of Trade, it is often less than a year. However, it can never be less than two months. The licence can be partially used and is not transferable.

The pharmaceutical industry is protected. All imports of pharmaceutical products are controlled by the Central Pharmacy of Tunisia. Additionally, agricultural products from Arab and North African nations have preferential tariff rates.

Customs Duties and Taxes on Imports
According to the latest data available from the World Bank, the simple average tariff across all products is 10.21%, whereas the trade weighted average tariff is 9.35%.
Customs Classification
Tunisia applies the Harmonized Customs System.
Import Procedures

Operators in the economic free zone and imports necessary for production in companies engaged only in export are not subject to carrying out any foreign trade formalities. All goods benefiting from the free import regime are imported with an import certificate and a commercial invoice.

Goods excluded from the free import regime can only be imported with import authorisations issued by the Ministry of Trade. These import authorisations are valid for a year except for certain sensitive goods. These applications obtained from Chambers of Commerce are filed with a receipt from an approved intermediary who sends them to the Ministry of Trade. 

Customs procedures are either a quick collection by simplified procedure (Request for Collection Authorisation: DAE), carriage to the factory under Customs seal, escort or inspection at the factory by the on-site Customs officer or later regularisation before export.

Please consult the Tunisian Customs' Import Procedures Manual for more information (in French).

Importing Samples
Temporary admission of goods and equipment is not subject to customs duty. Tunisia adhers to the ATA Carnet convention.

To go further, check out our service Import controls and Export controls.

For Further Information
Directorate General of Customs
Ministry of Trade and Crafts

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Latest Update: July 2024