Policy background

The cooperation between the EU and Tunisia has developed under an Association Agreement, signed in 1995, and was further strengthened with a Privileged Partnership in 2012.

Research and Innovation (R&I) is a key building block of the relationship: In June 2003, Tunisia was the first country in the southern Mediterranean to sign a Scientific and Technological agreement with the EU. It entered into force in April 2004. Since 1 January 2016, it is the only African and the only Arab country associated to Horizon 2020. Tunisia benefited from the Policy Support Facility (PSF) Specific Support under Horizon 2020, which recommendations were compiled in a final report presented in September 2019 to the respective stakeholders in Tunisia during the TESI conference, Journées “Tuniso-Européenne Science et Innovation”.

Tunisia also plays an active role in the two Euro-Mediterranean initiatives: PRIMA and BLUEMED.

On 29 March 2022 the European Commission and Tunisia have signed the agreement granting the Republic of Tunisia the association status to Horizon Europe, the EU’s research and innovation programme (2021-2027). The signature ceremony took place in a hybrid format in Brussels and in Tunis, in the presence of Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, and Deputy Director-General Signe Ratso, Chief Negotiator for HE Association, DG Research and Innovation, European Commission. On behalf of Tunisia, Moncef Boukthir, Minister for Higher Education and Scientific Research of the Republic of Tunisia, signed the Association Agreement. The Horizon Europe Association Agreement will start producing legal effect after its entry into force that is once Tunisia completes its ratification process and an exchange of diplomatic notes takes place between the Commission and the Tunisian authorities.

Horizon 2020 key figures for Tunisia.

Funding opportunities

Horizon Europe

Horizon Europe is the EU’s key funding programme for research and innovation with a budget of €95.5 billion available over 7 years (2021 to 2027).

Horizon Europe website

Projects and results

Research project database (CORDIS)

The Commission's primary portal for results of EU-funded research projects. Here you can find International cooperation projects related to Tunisia.

EU funded projects

Project success stories

Stories of particularly successful EU-funded research projects involving Tunisia.

Examples of international cooperation projects

  • InSPIRES (2017-2021) brings together practitioners, civil society and other stakeholders to co-design, pilot, implement and roll out innovative models for Science Shops (SS), which are intermediation structures to connect civil society organizations and research institutions. The main goal is to build effective cooperation between science and society by supporting the growth of SS.
  • ODYSSEA (2017-2021) will develop, operate and demonstrate a platform that fully integrates networks of observing and forecasting systems across the Mediterranean basin, addressing both the open sea and the coastal zone. It aims to boost accessibility to existing data while increasing the “temporal and geographic coverage of observational data”.
  • CLAIM (2017-2021) focuses on the development of innovative cleaning technologies and approaches to reduce the amount and impact of plastic pollution in the Mediterranean and Baltic Sea. The proposed cleaning technologies and approaches prevent litter from entering the sea at two main source points: wastewater treatment plants and river mouths.

Contact

National Contact Points

The National Contact Points (NCPs) provide guidance, practical information and assistance on all aspects of participation in Horizon Europe.

European Commission

Silvia Bojinova
Policy Officer
DG Research and Innovation, Unit R&I 05 Horizon Europe Association

Telephone: +32 229 85891 | email: Silvia.BOJINOVA@ec.europa.eu

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