Less foreign investors leave Tunisia’s energy sector in dire straights

Tunisia’s Energy Minister Hela Cheikhrouhou has revealed that, due to declining foreign investment, national power production has been in steady decline over the last few years and that Tunisia now consumes twice as much as energy it produces.

Cheikhrouhou said that foreign investors fear losing money due to excessive bureaucracy. More so, the stringent Tunisian parliament processing in order to get an inspection permit plays a role in discouraging foreign investment.

A number of investors fear to suffer losses during red-tape measures, despite the transparency of Tunisian transactions in the field of energy, added the energy minister.

Energy investment has been increasing in cost in Tunisia, with a government-linked institution getting hold of 50 percent investments, energy sector sources said.

In response to declining foreign investments in the energy field, oil companies’ contributions to the national budget went below the average 3 billion Tunisian dinars (about $1.2 billion) between 2009 and 2010.

Oil revenues are expected to drop as low as one billion Tunisian dinars (about $400 million) in 2017. It is worth noting that 80 percent of oil returns fund the Tunisian state treasury.

Speaking on oil production, Cheikhrouhou confirmed that over the last six years, production rates have nearly been halved.

 

Source credit – aawsat.com

Full article: https://english.aawsat.com/almunji-alsaidani/business/tunisias-power-consumption-exceeds-production-twofold

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