The 2016 International Expert Workshop for ‘Employability in Agriculture, Renewable Energies and IT in Tunisia’, held by the Maghreb Economic Forum (Tunis, 27-30/07/2016), was a three days discussion among high-level experts from Tunisia and around the world. (See list of participants and bios of the experts). The workshop was the final component in a series of four workshops held by the MEF on the same subject throughout the year, in three regions of the country: Tunis, Gafsa and Tataouine. The workshop focused on the role of multilateral organizations, foreign foundations and international experts in providing guidance throughout Tunisia’s socio-economic transition towards inclusive growth. In order to prevent this long-term process from failing, we must identify the major obstacles standing in the way of large- scale job creation programs and identify new opportunities and innovative solutions.

The key questions raised at the workshop were:

  • How can the state better identify emerging trends and assess the needs of local communities?
  • Which structural reforms are needed and which legislative policies are to be drafted by the parliament to tackle the issue of illegal employment in the informal sector and improve informal worker access to decent work and government protections?
  • How can executive power close the gap between policies and implementation?
  • How can leaders from civil society organizations, the media and the private sector exert pressure on ruling elites to revisit the education system and increase labor market efficiency?
  • How can the state create an enabling and secure environment to boost employment, promote a favorable investment climate, improve conditions for start-up founders and enhance trade?
  • Which best practices and innovative value-added solutions from abroad can be adapted to the Tunisian context?