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BASIC COUNTRY FACTS

Republic of Tunisia

Tunis

  • Arabic
  • Tounsi
  • Jebbali

11.53 million

Tunisian dinar

.tn

+216

Tunisian dinar

STATUTORY LABOR REQUIREMENTS

Probation Period

  • Depending on the type of employment probation period ranges from 6 to 9 months.

Annual Leave

  • Employees receive one vacation day per month. 
  • After one year of work, they will accumulate 12 vacation days.

Public Holidays

  1. New Year's Day (1st January)
  2. Revolution and Youth Day (14th January)
  3. Independence Day of Tunisia (20th March)
  4. Martyrs' Day in Tunisia (9th April)
  5. Labor Day (1st May)
  6. Eid al-Fitr
  7. Republic Day (25th July)
  8. Eid al-Adha
  9. Women's Day (13th August)
  10. Islamic New Year
  11. Evacuation Day (15th October)
  12. Prophet's Birthday
  13. National Revolution Day (17th December)

Maternity Leave

  • Female employees receive 30 days of leave. 
  • In order to receive 66.7% of their daily earnings, the employee must have contributed to social insurance for at least 80 days in the four quarters leading up to the birth.

Paternity Leave

  • Fathers receive one day of paid leave within the first seven days following the birth of the child.

Sick Leave

  • For an employee to receive sickness benefit, they must have at least 50 days of covered employment in the last two quarters or 80 days in the last fourth quarters before sickness began.  
  • The insured employee receives 66.7% of their daily average earnings for 180 days after a five-day waiting period.

Work Hours

  • A work week is 5 days and should not exceed 48 hours.

Overtime

  • A workday should not exceed 10 hours per day or 60 hours per week.
  • All overtime work must be compensated additionally to the base salary 
    • for the full-time work of 48 hours per week: 75%; 
    • for full-time work of less than 48 hours per week: 25% up to 48 hours and 50% beyond this period; 
    • for part-time work: 50%

Notice Period

  • One month’s notice period should be given in writing.

Severance

  • Employees are entitled to severance pay unless they have been terminated for misconduct.
  • Payment is calculated as one day’s pay for each month of employment. 
  • The maximum amount of severance is three months’ pay.

13th Month Salary in Brazil

  • Yes
  • There is no statutory requirement to pay the 13th or the 14th month salary.
  • However, it is customary for companies to pay the 13th month salary.

 INCOME TAX

  • PIT is due by all individuals considered as tax resident in Tunisia on the basis of their worldwide income (including foreign-sourced income, except those already subject to tax abroad).
  • For non-Tunisian tax resident individuals, Tunisian-sourced income realized by non-resident employees is subject to income tax in Tunisia, in general, through a withholding tax (WHT) to be applied by the Tunisian established debtor.
  • For salaries, the net income is calculated as the gross salary reduced by the mandatory social security contributions paid to Tunisian social security organizations and 10% on the amount net of Tunisian social security contributions as deduction for professional expenses, capped at TND 2,000.
  • The monthly income tax is calculated as 1/12 of the annual income tax determined according to the progressive scale below.
  • However, the income tax may be due at a flat rate of 20% of their gross income, before deductions for any reason whatsoever (including compulsory social security contributions for the establishment of their retirement pensions), for:
    • Non-resident employees working in Tunisia for a period or periods not exceeding six months per fiscal year.
    • Certain employees of foreign nationality (managers and trainers)
  • Except in cases where the option to pay the income tax at a flat rate is possible, income tax is calculated according to the following progressive scale:

Taxable income (TND)

Rate (%)

Effective rate on limit (%)

From

To

0

5,000

0

0

5,001

20,000

26

19.50

20,001

30,000

28

22.33

30,001

50,000

32

26.20

50,001

and above

35

-

 

  • The financial Law 2020 provided that individuals realizing exclusively salaries, wages, pensions and life annuities and whose annual net income does not exceed 5,000 dinars are exempted from the said social solidarity contribution as from January 1, 2020.
  • Hence, the PIT scale will be as follows:

Taxable income (TND)

PIT rate excluding the solidarity contribution (%)

PIT rate including the solidarity contribution (%)

From 0 to 5,000

0

0/1

From 5,000 to 20,000

26

27

From 20,000 to 30,000

28

29

From 30,000 to 50,000

32

33

Beyond 50,000

35

36

DEDUCTIBLE EXPENSES

Personal Deductions

Childcare expenses

  • Deduction provided for family chief is TND 300.
  • Deductions provided for dependent children are TND 100 per child for the first four dependent children starting from 1 January 2019.
  • Deduction for disabled dependent children is TND 2,000 per child regardless of age and rank.
  • The Taxpayer children or the taxpayer's adopted children of less than 20 years old on 1 January of the tax year are considered as dependent on the taxpayer, provided that they do not have a separate income from the income that serves as the taxation base of the taxpayer.

Dependent parents

  • A deduction is available for each taxpayer's dependent parent within the limit of 5% of the taxable income with a maximum of 450 dinars (150 TND before finance law 2020) per dependent parent, subject to the following conditions:
    • The deductible amount is mentioned on the income statement of the beneficiary of the pension which should be filed simultaneously with that of the concerned person;
    • The income of the dependent parent (s), increased by the amount of the deduction, does not exceed 2 times the minimum wage (one time before finance law 2020).

Education Expenses

  • A deduction of TND 1,000 per child is available for children who are pursuing higher education without benefit of scholarship and who are less than 25 years old on January 1st of the tax year.

Life Insurance Premiums

  • Life insurance premiums are deductible if the insurance contracts contain one of the guarantees listed by the law, within the limit of TND 10,000.

Mortgage Deductions

  • Interests granted to holders of housing savings contracts are exempt from PIT.

 

Personal Deductions

Childcare expenses

  • Deduction provided for family chief is TND 300.
  • Deductions provided for dependent children are TND 100 per child for the first four dependent children starting from 1 January 2019.
  • Deduction for disabled dependent children is TND 2,000 per child regardless of age and rank.
  • The Taxpayer children or the taxpayer's adopted children of less than 20 years old on 1 January of the tax year are considered as dependent on the taxpayer, provided that they do not have a separate income from the income that serves as the taxation base of the taxpayer.

Dependent parents

  • A deduction is available for each taxpayer's dependent parent within the limit of 5% of the taxable income with a maximum of 450 dinars (150 TND before finance law 2020) per dependent parent, subject to the following conditions:
  • The deductible amount is mentioned on the income statement of the beneficiary of the pension which should be filed simultaneously with that of the concerned person;
  • The income of the dependent parent (s), increased by the amount of the deduction, does not exceed 2 times the minimum wage (one time before finance law 2020).

Education Expenses

  • A deduction of TND 1,000 per child is available for children who are pursuing higher education without benefit of scholarship and who are less than 25 years old on January 1st of the tax year.

Life Insurance Premiums

  • Life insurance premiums are deductible if the insurance contracts contain one of the guarantees listed by the law, within the limit of TND 10,000.

Mortgage Deductions

  • Interests granted to holders of housing savings contracts are exempt from PIT.

IMMIGRATION

  • Tunisia issues the following documents to foreign nationals: 
    • Entry visas for stays of less than three months 
    • Work permits 
    • Residence permits, which often require applicants to first possess work permits 
  • The requirements for entering, working and residing in the country depend on the nationality of the foreign national. 
  • Nationals of European Union (EU) countries, Canada and the United States are not required to obtain entry visas to visit Tunisia. 
  • Nationals of France and the Union of the Arab Maghreb (Union du Maghreb Arabe, or UMA) may enjoy certain special work and residence privileges. 
  • Foreign nationals must obtain entry visas from Tunisian embassies or consulates for stays of less than three months.
  • Foreign nationals wishing to work in Tunisia must obtain work permits before beginning employment. 
  • The Ministry of Training and Employment requires specific documentation before permitting a foreign national to work in Tunisia. 
  • The ministry ensures that all employment opportunities are made available to Tunisian citizens before offering employment to foreign workers. 
  • A foreign national wishing to practice a salaried professional activity in Tunisia must apply for work permit through his or her local employer. 
  • The employee must also provide a résumé and any diplomas and transcripts certifying his or her qualifications. 
  • The ministry requires a certificate attesting that a local Tunisian with similar qualifications was not available. 
  • Work permits issued by the ministry have specific expiration dates. 
  • The work permit period may not exceed one year. 
  • To renew the work permit, the employer must again seek approval from the ministry by justifying the need to hire a foreign worker.

 

Type of Visa/Permit

Documentation

Validity

Eligibility

Work Permit

  • A completed visa application form
  • A passport that’s valid for a minimum of six months and has been issued within the last decade
  • A copy of the first page of the applicant’s passport
  • One or two passport photos, depending on the specific embassy’s requirements
  • Proof of accommodation in Tunisia, such as a lease or hotel reservation
  • A travel itinerary with the planned dates of travel
  • A letter of invitation from the employer in Tunisia
  • Evidence that the visa application fee has been paid

1 year

  • Foreign nationals wishing to work in Tunisia must obtain work permits before beginning employment. 

Tourist Visa

  • Valid passport
  • Passport size photographs
  • Proof of hotel reservations or a notarized letter of invitation from a host in Tunisia
  • Copy of the passport

3 months                                                                       

  • Foreigners who intend to visit Tunisia for a short term must apply for a tourist visa

VALUE ADDED TAX

  • VAT is levied under the Tunisian VAT Code and is due on all transactions taking place in Tunisia.
  • The sale of goods is considered as taking place in Tunisia and thus subject to VAT if the goods sold are delivered in Tunisia. 
  • The standard rate of VAT is 19%. 
  • Lower rates of 7% and 13% apply to specifically designated operations.

VAT

Standard Rate

19%

Reduced Rate

13%

Reduced Rate

7%

WITHHOLDING TAX 

  • The WHT rates on various types of income are set out below. 
  • The tax is a final tax for non-residents.

Payment

Residents

Non-Residents

Dividends

10%

10%/25%

Interest

20%

20%/25%

Royalties

-

-

Professional fees

5%

15%/25%

Payments exceeding TND1 000

1.5%

n/a

TERMINATION

  • For an employer to terminate an employer, they must present a significant and just cause.
  • Before the dismissal, the employee has the right to appeal their case before a discipline council.
  • One month’s notice period should be given in writing.
  • Employees are entitled to severance pay unless they have been terminated for misconduct.
  • Payment is calculated as one day’s pay for each month of employment. 
  • The maximum amount of severance is three months’ pay.

STATUTORY BENEFITS

  • These are mandatory benefits as postulated by law
  • These include probationary period, annual leave, public holidays, sick leave, maternity leave, overtime pay, notice period, paternity leave and severance pay
  • Statutory benefits also include social security benefits

Statutory Benefits

Probationary Period

Annual Leave

Public Holidays

Maternity Leave

Sick Leave

Overtime Pay

Notice Period

Paternity Leave

Severance Pay

Social Security Benefits

PAYMENTS AND INVOICING

  • The taxable period corresponds to the calendar year.
  • However: -
    • capital gains arising from the disposal of immovable properties (expressly designated by the law) are to be declared within three months following the sale operation, and
    • capital gains arising from the disposal of shares are to be declared once a year, for the whole transactions made during that year, no later than the end of February of the following year.
  • Income tax due on salaries paid by Tunisian established companies to employees, whether resident in Tunisia or not, is to be withheld at source by the employer and paid to the tax authorities no later than the 15th day of the following month if the employer is an individual or the 28th day of the following month if the employer is a corporation.
  • Income tax due on salaries earned by non-Tunisian resident persons working in Tunisia is to be paid through a WHT that will be applied by the employee. 
  • The tax is to be paid to the tax authorities no later than the 15th day of the following month.
  • In all cases, the employees have the obligation to file an annual tax return no later than 5 December of the following year, but no payment is due.
  • In case of definitive departure of non-Tunisian resident employees, they have to file their annual tax returns during the month preceding their departure.

EASE OF DOING BUSINESS

  • The ease of doing business index is an index created by Simeon Djankov, an economist at the Central and Eastern Europe sector of the World Bank Group.
  • Higher rankings (a low numerical value) indicate better, usually simpler, regulations for businesses and stronger protections of property rights.
  • According to the World Bank Tunisia ranked 78th in the World in 2019 in terms of ease of doing business.

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