Tunisia

Tunisia is among the world’s leading suppliers of clothing, an industry that supplies trousers, jeans, T-shirts, work attire, and swimwear mostly for those living in the European Union (EU).

Employing more than 250,000 individuals, the textile/garment industry is key in economic growth. The textile/garment sector is the second exporter among Tunisian manufacturing industries, representing 19% of total exports (CEPEX, 2013). Two of the garment key organizations are the Tunisian General Union of Workers (UGTT), and the Tunisian Union of Manufacturing, Trade and Handicrafts (UTICA). The UGTT and the UTICA are the main stakeholders in collective bargaining.

The 2015 Nobel peace prize was won by the Tunisian quartet – made up of the union federation UGTT, the employers’ institute, the Tunisian human rights league and the order of lawyers, who prevented Tunisia from falling into a civil war by brokering talks between the different forces. 2015 marked further political transitioning with a new government beginning a five-year term. Tunisia was also shocked by several terrorist attacks on tourists and the presidential guard. The attacks are likely to have an impact on economic growth, as tourism is one of the main economic sectors.

Currently, approximately 40 factories are supplying 13 FWF members. In Tunisian textile factories, human rights violations take place. One of the most common findings in FWF audits is that workers are not aware of their labour rights. Complaints handling systems are not functioning well, and workers don’t have access to remedy. FWF has a local audit team and complaints handler in Tunis.

FWF found many cases where worker committees did not exist or were not active, even though they are a legal requirement.

Issues concerning occupational health and safety were found in all factories audited by FWF, like blocked access to emergency exits, lack of evacuation plans and fire safety. Many workers did not obtain a contract or only signed a short-term contract of one to three months and were transferred to an interim agency after four years instead of obtaining a permanent contract.

Lack of payment of a living wage remains a problem, especially since the inflation rate is high.

In some cases FWF found juvenile workers and apprentices who worked overtime and were not properly registered.

In 2016, Fair Wear Foundation’s activities in Tunisia focused on the implementation of the Workplace Education Programme to raise awareness on labour rights and grievance mechanisms. After having started up the Workplace Education Programme in 2014 in Tunisia, FWF continues to promote the WEP Basic training among brands sourcing from Tunisia.

For questions about FWF’s work in Tunisia, please contact Wilco van Bokhorst.

Indicators

  1. FWF active since: 2004
  2. Complaints handler: yes
  3. Audit teams: 1
  4. FWF member sourcing: 19
  5. Number of suppliers: 49
  6. Human development rank: 96
  7. Minimum wage: 340TND=220$
  8. GDP per capita per year(PPP$): 10767.6
  9. Income equality value (Gini): 35.8
  10. Population below 1.25$/day: --
  11. Child labour (5-14 years): --
  12. Trade union situation

Resources

Resources related to Tunisia

Tunisia Complaint KOI March 2017

Complaint at a factory in Tunisia where FWF member KOI has productio date: 13/08/2017Read more

Tunisia Complaint Bierbaum Proenen July 2017

Complaint at a factory in Tunisia where Bierbaum Proenen has product date: 13/08/2017Read more

Tunisia Complaint Van Puijenbroek March 2017

Final report of a complaint at a factory in Tunisia supplying Van P date: 25/04/2017Read more

Tunisia complaint Bierbaum Proenen Feb. 2017

Final report of a complaint at a factory in Tunisia supplying Bierb date: 06/06/2017Read more

Tunisia Complaint Expresso 2016

Initial report Complaint tunisia Expresso 2016 On 5 August 2016, a date: 17/11/2016Read more

Tunisia Complaint Nudie Jeans May 2016

Final report of complaint at factory in Tunisia supplying Nudie Jean date: 11/05/2016Read more

Tunisia Complaint Bierbaum Proenen and Fristad Kansas 2016

Initial report of complaint in Tunisia at a factory supplying Bierb date: 17/11/2016Read more

Tunisia Country Study 2015

Tunisia     date: 21/07/2016Read more

Tunisia Country Plan 2015

Tunisia (2015) date: 21/12/2011Read more

Tunisia Complaint Expresso December 2015

intermediate REPORT COMPLAINT IN tunesia AT FACTORY SUPPLYING exp date: 15/02/2015Read more

Tunisia Complaint Bierbaum Proenen June 2014

intermediate REPORT COMPLAINT IN Tunesia AT FACTORY SUPPLYING Bie date: 28/03/2014Read more

Tunisia Complaint Nudie Jeans May 2014

final REPORT COMPLAINT IN Tunesia AT FACTORY SUPPLYING Nudie jeans date: 28/03/2014Read more

Tunisia Complaint Expresso March 2013

Final REPORT COMPLAINT IN Tunesia AT FACTORY SUPPLYING expresso date: 26/02/2013Read more

Tunisia Complaint Expresso February 2010

final REPORT COMPLAINT IN tunesia AT FACTORY SUPPLYING expresso date: 22/12/2011Read more

Tunisia Complaint Bierbaum Proenen June 2014 Final Report

Final report of a complaint at a factory in Tunisia supplying Bierb date: 14/06/2017Read more

Projects

Projects in Tunisia

Workplace Education Programme

FWF members aim for more than participating in auditing. FWF’s Workplace Education Programme (WEP) provides short, targeted onsite training for managers, supervisors and workers. The training aims to raise awareness about the various labour standards and effective methods for communicating about problems and resolving disputes. Managers, supervisors and workers also learn about FWF’s complaints mechanism.

Go to WEP

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