Posted by: Agence Tunis Afrique Presse

The progress of the majority of infrastructure megaprojects in Tunisia is within the timeframe and will be accelerated to ensure their entry into operation late 2018 or early 2019, said Wednesday, Minister of Equipment, Housing and Spatial Planning Mohamed Salah Arfaoui.

Currently, 5,000 infrastructure projects, spread throughout the territory, are underway, with an investment worth about 8 billion dinars, the Minister added in a statement to TAP on the sidelines of opening works of a three-day training seminar on “Management of Road Infrastructure Projects,” organised as part of cooperation with the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA).

He specified that among these megaprojects, the Gafsa-Jelma highway and the Gafsa-Sidi Bouzid-Kasserine highway in a 2nd stage, then the project of the Tunis city exit and the bridge of Bizerte, etc.

However, Arfaoui pointed out the lack of funding needed for the completion of some projects including cross-roads linking the western regions to the ports, adding that only funding lines for the achievement of the road connecting Kasserine and Sfax had been identified.

Moreover, the minister said that 50 executives and technicians working on various infrastructure projects all over the Tunisian territory, will benefit from this training seminar, as part of cooperation actions undertaken by KOICA through a capacity building program that had benefited four groups of the ministry executives during a training in South Korea on infrastructure.

The goal, he added, is to make the most of Korea’s experience in technology development in infrastructure, adding that the program of the current training includes field visits by Korean experts to Tunisian project sites.

For his part, South Korea’s Ambassador in Tunis Cho Koo Rae affirmed that his country intends to double investments in Tunisia in 2019 and to invite Korean investors to the 50th anniversary (in 2019) of Tunisian-Korean diplomatic relations.

He recalled in this regard, that Korea’s current investment volume is worth 200 million dollars, underlining that the potential exists given the strategic position of Tunisia in the MENA region and its proximity to Europe.

Currently, Korea is interested in the SMEs and intends to develop in the future its investments in car industry and agriculture.