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Tunisia is a small country that is considered the jewel of North Africa enjoying a strategic location in the heart of the Mediterranean with daily connections to major cities in the region. By air, Tunis is only one hour away from Rome, two hours from Paris and many other Western European capitals.
Tunisia is renowned for the homogeneity of its population and the high level of tolerance of its society. Historically, the country has been at the crossroad of civilizations: home to the Carthaginian, Byzantine, Phoenician, Roman and Ottoman Empires.
Tunisia is socially and politically stable and has exemplary ties with all countries around the world. An open and broadminded society with diversified cultural backgrounds, Tunisia welcomes anyone and everyone offering a safe haven for nationals, foreign visitors and expatriates alike. In fact, with its mild Mediterranean climate, it is one of the region’s most solicited destinations with an annual flow of over six million tourists.
The country has an open liberalized economy, a sustained economic development and an emerging market with continued economic growth. With an annual per capita income exceeding US $2,000, Tunisia’s represents the highest on the southern side of the Mediterranean and among the highest in Africa (second only to South Africa). Furthermore, Tunisia is the first Mediterranean country to sign an agreement with the European Union for the creation of a free trade zone.
The position of women in Tunisia is among the most privileged in North Africa and the Middle East, and can be compared to parts of Southern Europe. For decades, the Tunisian government has placed a strong emphasis on gender equality and on promoting social development. Although not a rich country, Tunisia has been extremely successful in modernizing society. Today, the active role of women in higher education (over 55% of all university students are women) and the workplace serve as a key model for many Arab countries and Tunisia is the country of reference when comparing gender issues in the region.
Since obtaining independence in 1956 Tunisian education officials have been working to develop an education system that is responsive to the needs of a rapidly developing country, while also emphasizing the need to develop a distinct national and regional identity. (Add a link to pictures on Tunisia)