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Tunisia-Investment Incentives Code
Section-III - Chapter-I
Export Incentives
* System governing entities wholly engaged in export

Article-10 : Considered as being wholly engaged in export are companies whose production is wholly intended for foreign countries or companies rendering services abroad or in Tunisia for use abroad.

Also considered as being wholly engaged in export are companies working exclusively with the companies mentioned in the first paragraph of the present article, with companies established in economic free zones such as those envisaged by Law n92-81 of 3rd August 1992, and with banking and financial entities working mainly with non-residents as envisaged by Law n85-108 of 6th December 1985 comprising encouragement to banking and financial entities working mainly with non-residents.

Article-11 : *

Companies wholly engaged in export are subject to the free zone system as defined by the Customs Code.

Atricle-12 : *

Only the following taxes, duties, deductions and contributions are payable by companies wholly engaged in export by virtue of their activities in Tunisia :

1. Taxes and duties relating to passenger cars;

2. The single compensation tax on road transport;

3. Maintenance and sanitation taxes;

4. Taxes and duties collected by virtue of services rendered directly in compliance with current legislation;

5. Contributions and subscriptions to the legal social security system, subject to the provisions of Articles 25, 43 and 45 of the present Code. However, before they are recruited by the company, non-resident foreigners can, at the time they are recruited, opt for a non-Tunisian social security system. In that case, neither the employee nor the employer is obliged to pay subscriptions and contributions to the Tunisian social security system;

6. Income tax on natural persons after deduction of 50% of the income originating from export, subject to the provisions of Article 17 of the present Code. However, and on presentation of an application when presenting the annual income-tax declaration, income originating from exports is wholly deducted from the taxable basis for that tax for the first ten years following the first export operation and notwithstanding the provisions of Article 12 bis of Law n89-114 of 30th December 1989 promulgating the Code governing income tax on natural persons and companies tax;

7. Companies tax after deduction of 50% of the profits originating from exports, subject to the provisions of Article 17 of the present Code. However, and on presentation of an application when the annual companies tax declaration is presented, the profits originating from export are wholly deducted from the taxable basis for the first ten years from the first export operation, notwithstanding the provisions of Article 12 of Law n89-114 of 30th December 1989 promulgating the Code for income tax on natural persons and companies tax.

Article-13 : *

1. Subject to the provisions of Articles 12 and 12 bis of Law n 89-114 of 30th December 1989 promulgating the Code for income tax on natural persons and companies tax, subscriptions to the initial capital of entities wholly engaged in exports or to its increase allow the deduction of the incomes or profits invested from the net incomes or profits liable to income tax on natural persons or companies tax.

2. Subject to the provisions of Article 12 of Law n89-114 of 30th December 1989 mentioned in the present article, investments made by companies wholly engaged in export allow the deduction of the profits invested in the company itself from the net profit liable to companies tax.

Entitlement to the benefits envisaged by the two preceding paragraphs of the present article is subject to adherence to the conditions envisaged by Article 7 of the present Code.

Article-14 : *

Companies wholly engaged in export are considered to be non-resident when their capital is held by Tunisian or foreign non-residents through the import of convertible foreign currency equal to at least 66% of the capital.

Article-15 : *

Companies wholly engaged in export can freely import the goods necessary for their production subject to making a customs declaration which takes the place of a customs bond note.

Article-16 : *

Subject to the provisions of Article 17 of the present Code, companies wholly engaged in export can be authorised to make sales or to render services in Tunisia concerning part of their own production within the limit of proportions which will be determined by decree, depending on the activities and products concerned. In no case may those proportions exceed a maximum of 20% of their turnover. Agricultural and fisheries companies are considered as being wholly engaged in export activities if they export at least 70% of their production, and are entitled to dispose of the remainder on the local market.

Article-17 : *

Sales made and services rendered on the local market by the companies covered in Article 16 of the present code are subject to the foreign trade procedures and regulations and to payment of customs duties and other taxes on imports.

When paying customs duties on the proportions marketed locally, these operations give rise to payment of an advance on the tax due on incomes or profits originating from sales made and services rendered on the local market. This advance is fixed at 2.5% of the overall turnover originating from sales on the local market.

However, the provisions of the present article do not apply to agricultural and fisheries products marketed locally, in accordance with the provisions of Article 16 of the present Code.

Article-18 : *

companies wholly engaged in export can recruit foreign management and training staff up to the limit of four people for each company, after informing the Ministry in charge of professional training and employment. Beyond that limit, companies must comply with a recruitment and Tunisification programme previously approved by the Minister in charge of professional training and employment.

The terms and conditions of this system are defined by decree in accordance with Article 260 of the Labour Code.

Article-19 : *

The foreign staff recruited according to the provisions of Article 18 of the present Code, and the foreign investors or their representatives in charge of managing the company, are entitled to the following benefits:

1. Payment of a lump sum income tax fixed at 20% of gross earnings;

2. Exemption from customs duties and dues of a similar nature and from the taxes due on importing prsonal effects and one passenger car for each person.

The transfer to a resident of the vehicle or personal effects imported is liable to the foreign trade formalities and payment of the duties and taxes prevailing on the transfer date, calculated on the basis of the value of the vehicle or effects on that date.

Article-20 : *

Companies wholly engaged in export are subject to supervision by the competent administrative authorities aimed at checking that their activities comply with the provisions on the present code. In particular, they are permanently subject to customs control and are responsible fro paying staff and office charges relating thereto.

The terms and conditions of customs control payment of the coasts relating thereto are fixed by decree.

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