Tunisia’s trade deficit soared 12% to a near-record $7.2bn for 2018, with a record 33% of this accounted for by oil and gas imports. With dwindling oil and gas output and higher oil prices, Tunisia is increasingly at the mercy of the global energy markets.
Tunisia’s struggling economy racked up a $7.2bn trade deficit in 2018 with net oil and gas imports accounting for a record $2.3bn – 33% of the total.
Gone are the days when Tunisia was a net oil exporter. Having peaked at 118,000 b/d in 1979, crude output has halved since 2010 to just 38,000 b/d for 2018 (see chart 1). Tunisia is now reliant on imports to meet 60% of oil demand.
Tunisia isn’t faring any better on the gas front. Gas output has been steadily declining since 2010’s 310mn cfd to an estimated 196mn cfd for 2018. As with oil, domestic demand has continued to...