Tunisian power demand is growing rapidly, at an estimated percent annually. Recent census figures indicate that around 94.6 percent of Tunisian homes had access to electricity in 1999, up sharply from 85.9 percent in 1994. Around 96 percent of Tunisian power generating capacity is thermal (oil and gas), with the rest mainly hydropower.
In late 1999, financing on the $250-million Rades, 471-megawatt (MW), gas-fired power project was completed. A consortium comprised of U.S.-based PSEG (35 percent), Sithe Energies (32.5 percent), and Japan's Marubeni (32.5 percent) is developing the project on a 20-year build, own, and transfer (BOT) basis. Rades -- Tunisia's first independent power plant -- is expected to become operational by January 2002.
Gas for the Rades plant is to be supplied from various Tunisian sources. Tunisia's state-owned gas and power company, STEG (Societe Tunisienne de l'Electricite et du Gaz) has signed a 20-year power-purchase agreement with the consortium building Rades.
Italian company Pirelli has a contract with STEG to conduct work on the power cable system feeding Tunis, and to build a high-tension connection between major substations supplying power to the capital. In early 1999, Japan's Marubeni won a 20-year contract to build a thermal power plant in a suburb of Tunis.
Chief of State: President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali (since November 7, 1987)
Prime Minister: Mohamed Ghannouchi
Independence: March 20, 1956 (from France)
Population (7/99E): 9.5 million
Location/Size: Northern Africa, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Algeria and Libya/163,610 square kilometers (63,170 square miles), slightly larger than Georgia
Major Cities: Tunis (capital), Sfax
Languages: Arabic (official and one of the languages of commerce), French (commerce)
Major Ethnic Groups: Arab (98 percent), European (1 percent), Jewish and other (1 percent)
Religion: Muslim (98 percent), Christian (1 percent), Jewish and other (1 percent)
Defense (1997E): Army (27,000), Navy (4,500), Air Force (3,500), Paramilitary Forces (12,000)
Minister of Finance: Taoufik Baccar
Currency: Tunisian Dinar (Dh)
Market Exchange Rate (6/27/00):US$1 = 1.36 Dh
Gross Domestic Product (GDP) (1999E): $18.1 billion
Real GDP Growth Rate (1999E): 6.2 percent (2000E): 6.2 percent
Inflation Rate (1999E): 3.3% (2000E): 3.5 percent
Unemployment Rate (1998E): 15.6 percent
Current Account Balance (1999E): -$0.9 billion
Major Trading Partners: European Union, North African Countries, Asia, United States
Merchandise Exports (1999E): $6.0 billion
Merchandise Imports (1999E): $8.6 billion
Merchandise Trade Balance (1999E): -$2.6 billion
Major Export Products: Hydrocarbons, textiles, agricultural products, phosphates, chemicals
Major Import Products: Industrial goods and equipment, hydrocarbons, food, consumer goods
Total Debt (2000E):
Minister of Industry: Moncef ben Abdallah
Proven Oil Reserves (1/1/00E): 308 million barrels
Total Oil Production (1999E): 82,000 bbl/d (nearly all crude)
Oil Consumption (1998E): 79,000 bbl/d
Net Oil Exports (1999E): 3,000 bbl/d
Crude Refining Capacity (1/1/00E): 34,000 bbl/d
Natural Gas Reserves (1/1/00E): 2,750 billion cubic feet (Bcf)
Natural Gas Production (1998E): 67 Bcf
Natural Gas Consumption (1998E): 104 Bcf
Net Natural Gas Imports (1998E): 37 Bcf
Recoverable Coal Reserves (12/31/96): None
Coal Consumption/Imports (1998E): 0.1 Million short tons (Mmst)
Electric Generation Capacity (1/1/98E): 1.7 gigawatts (96 percent thermal, 4 percent hydroelectric)
Electricity Generation (1998E): 7.9 billion kilowatthours (bkwh)
Minister of Environment and Land Development: Faiza Kefi
Total Energy Consumption (1998E): 0.29 quadrillion Btu* (0.1 percent of world total energy consumption)
Energy-Related Carbon Emissions (1998E): 5.1 million metric tons of carbon (0.1 percent of world carbon emissions)
Per Capita Energy Consumption (1998E): 31.5 million Btu (vs. U.S. value of 350.7 million Btu)
Per Capita Carbon Emissions (1998E): 0.5 metric tons of carbon (vs. U.S. value of 5.5 metric tons of carbon)
Energy Intensity (1998E): 16,631 Btu/ $1990 (vs. U.S. value of 13,400 Btu/ $1990)**
Carbon Intensity (1998E): 0.28 metric tons of carbon/thousand $1990 (vs. U.S. value of 0.21 metric tons/thousand $1990)**
Sectoral Share of Energy Consumption (1997E): Industrial (45.5 percent), Transportation (25.6 percent), Residential (18.2 percent), Commercial (10.7 percent)
Sectoral Share of Carbon Emissions (1997E): Industrial (42.8%), Transportation (28.8 percent), Residential (18.0 percent), Commercial (10.4 percent)
Fuel Share of Energy Consumption (1998E): Oil (54.9 percent), Natural Gas (43.5 percent), Coal (1.0 percent)
Fuel Share of Carbon Emissions (1998E): Oil (58.2 percent), Natural Gas (40.1 percent), Coal (1.7 percent)
Renewable Energy Consumption (1997E): 40.0 trillion Btu* (no change from 1996)
Number of People per Motor Vehicle (1997): 15.6 (vs U.S. value of 1.3)
Status in Climate Change Negotiations: Non-Annex I country under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (ratified the Convention on July 15, 1993). Not a signatory to the Kyoto Protocol.
Major Environmental Issues: Toxic and hazardous waste disposal, water pollution from raw sewage, limited fresh water resources, deforestation, overgrazing, soil erosion, desertification
Major International Environmental Agreements: Party to agreements on Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, and Wetlands.
* The total energy consumption statistic includes petroleum, dry natural gas, coal, net hydro, nuclear, geothermal, solar and wind electric power. The renewable energy consumption statistic is based on International Energy Agency (IEA) data and includes hydropower, solar, wind, tide, geothermal, solid biomass and animal products, biomass gas and liquids, industrial and municipal wastes. Sectoral shares of energy consumption and carbon emissions are also based on IEA data.
**GDP based on EIA International Energy Annual 1998
OIL AND GAS INDUSTRIES
Organization: Tunisia's oil industry is regulated by the Ministry of Industry. ETAP is the state-owned petroleum company; STEG (Societe Tunisienne de l'Electricite et du Gaz) the state-owned gas and power company; SNDP (Societe Nationale de Distribution du Petrole is the national fuel distribution and marketing company.
Major Oil Fields: Ashtart, Bouri, El Borma, Ghadames Basin, Hasdrubal, Salambo, Sidi el Kilani
Refineries (capacity-bbl/d): Ste. Tunisienne Industries des Raffinage -- Bizerte (34,000)
Ports: Bizerte, Gabes, La Goulette, Sfax, Skhira, Sousse, Tunis, Zarzis
Major Foreign Energy Company Involvement: Agip, Anadarko, British Gas, Centurion, CMS Oil and Gas, EHT, Elf, Esso Tunisia, Kufpec, Marathon Oil, Mobil, Neste Oy, Nuevo Energy, Petro-Canada, Phillips Petroleum, Pluspetrol, Shell, Total, Union Texas Petroleum
Source: United States Energy Information Administration.
Information updated until June 2000.
© 2000 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )