14 November 2012

Tunisia: Official Talks On Tunisia's Access to EU Advanced Status to Begin November 19

Tunis — Official talks on Tunisia's access to the European Union (EU) advanced partner status will begin next November 19 in Brussels, announced Minister of Investment and International Co-operation Riadh Bettaieb.

On the sidelines of a Cabinet meeting held Wednesday in Kasbah, the Minister said negotiations on the establishment of a free trade zone will start early 2013 which requires, according to him, "the upgrading of some sectors such as services and certain agricultural products."

Emphasis will also be placed on easing visa-granting procedures to persons operating in the sectors of services, scientific research and innovation to enhance Tunisia's position on the European market, said the Minister.

Mr. Bettaieb stressed that these negotiations will pave the way for identifying a common space with the European Union and accordingly strengthen Tunisia's integration in the European economic space.

The Cabinet meeting examined a decree under which Turkey grants Tunisia a donation of 50 million dollars and a draft law on a 200-million-dollar loan (on advantageous terms) allocated by Turkey to consolidate the State budget, added the Minister.

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