- Buildings Guide
- Policy Guide
- Appliances Guide
Tunisia puts a lot of effort into its energy efficiency programmes for buildings and aims at reducing the national energy intensity by 3% annually, whilst also increasing the share of renewable energy to 4% of primary energy demand by 2016, as specified in the Four Year Programme for Energy Management. The programme was launched as a three year programme in 2005. By 2007 it achieved a reduction in energy demand of 8% (nearly 700,000 toe/yr in energy savings). Due to this success, the government continued with a four-year roadmap (2008-2011) targeting to save another 400,000 toe/yr, which was perpetuated in 2012 (Belloumi 2009, p. 2749). For the second programme period about EUR 540 million (DT 1.1 billion) were made available of which around EUR 215 million (DT 440 million) were used for energy efficiency measures (Amaimia NA, p. 32).
Tunisia’s energy roadmap gives planning security to domestic and foreign investors. While thermal insulation has been mandatory for new buildings and extensions to existing buildings since 2005, and a mandatory energy performance certificate has been introduced for important types of buildings in 2010, a financial incentive scheme (PROMO-ISOL) offering both grants and soft-loans is to stimulate the thermal insulation of roofs and another scheme (PROSOL) has been successful for solar water heating.
Tunisia puts a lot of effort in its energy efficiency programmes for buildings – not least because economic growth and increasing prosperity have resulted in overloading Tunisia’s electricity grid in recent years (GTZ 2009, p. 296). In Tunisia, the (residential and tertiary) buildings sector is growing into the biggest energy consumer having been the third largest in 2010 (26%; transportation sector: 31%; industrial sector: 36%; ANME 2010, p. 7) and in industry 60% of energy is used for building materials. Since 1975, Tunisia’s housing stock has increased by 3%/yr from 1 million in 1975 to 2.5 million dwellings in 2010. The main element of the Tunisian policy package is a mandatory minimum energy efficiency standards (MEPS) and energy labelling programme for new buildings and extensions to existing buildings. According to the Quadrennial plan, which ran from 2008-2011, 400,000 toe/yr can be saved in the buildings sector. This is about 4.5% of the total energy use in Tunisia (with an energy use of 9,200 ktoe in 2009 (World Bank 2012)). Further measures include obligations for large energy consumers to undertake energy audits; information campaigns; financial incentives; capacity building for, and in co-operation with, architects, engineers, and consultants in order to support builders throughout the construction process; as well as for the demonstration buildings, which will show the possibilities and benefits of energy efficient construction.
There is a National Energy Fund (FNME), which provides financial incentives for energy efficiency and renewable energy. Further investors like banks and GEF (Global Environment Facility) accompany the financial measures. Capacity building is a further measure, which includes training activities for construction techniques, an e-learning programme, and tools to assist building professionals to design more efficient buildings.
Tunisia has 10 million inhabitants with a population growth rate of more than 1% per year. Due to insufficient natural resources, energy imports are increasing since 2000. The climate is mostly hot and arid, in the North also warm-temperate.
Policy roadmap and targets for ultra-low energy buildings/retrofits
In Tunisia, the residential sector consumes 17% of final energy and figures indicate that cumulated with the tertiary sector 27% of final energy is used in the buildings sector. According to the Quadrennial (RCREEE 2010, p. 5) plan running from 2008 to 2011, 400,000 toe/yr was to be saved by 2011 through better lighting, thermal insulation and appliance standards. This figure represents close to 4.5% of the overall energy use in Tunisia having been 9,200 ktoe in 2009 (World Bank 2012) and also accounts for approximately 19.2% of the energy consumption in buildings. Therefore, a programme to promote standards funded by UNDP and the French government with $10.6 million was carried out. “The project succeeded in realising 46 demonstration projects, on the basis of which ANME (this is the national energy agency; comment by the bigEE team) was able to develop seven sectoral guides for professional people in the field. Focus was directed at low-cost interventions that would not add more than 10% to the cost of the building. A label indicating comfort and energy performance of buildings was developed and an extensive communication programme was launched with television, radio and newspaper advertisements; a dedicated web-site was created for all levels of interest“ (RCREEE 2010, p. 11).
Subsequent to the Quadrennial Plan, paragraph 11 of the Presidential Plan from 2009 to 2014 with the main aim being “Towards environment-friendly, energy-saving and innovative economy with high technological content” sets further targets for energy efficiency: “Improving energy efficiency indicator to reach 275 kg oil equivalent per 1000 dinars of GDP at constant prices, in 2014, compared to 305 kg currently” (STEG 2010; RCREEE 2011).
Ambitious targets like this give planning security to foreign investors investing in the field of energy in Tunisia as well as to domestic investors.
Traditionally, France and Tunisia have a close relationship due to colonial heritage and geographical proximity. Furthermore, France is an important partner in the energy sector for the North African country. A network of Local Energy Information Centres which have been successfully implemented in France is supposed to be transferred to Tunisia. The goal is to “heighten awareness and inform householders, retailers and tradesmen of the importance of a more rational use of energy“ (ADEME 2010).
From 2003 to 2013 the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ, formally known as GTZ (Agency for Technical Cooperation)) has worked together with the National Agency for Energy Management in order to develop tailor-made instruments for energy efficiency and renewable energy measures in Tunisia. Other public or private energy consumers were also informed about how to save energy (OEI NA).
Other bilateral or multilateral donors such as Japan or the World Bank are also working in the energy context in Tunisia.
The Tunisian National Agency for Energy Management (Agency Nationale pour la Maîtrise del’ Énergie, ANME), established in 1985, is in charge of “tanslating ministerial policy directives into practice.” It has 140 employees and seven regional offices. ANME is in charge of initiatives and measures that aim to increase the energy efficiency and to diversify energy resources.
Secondly, there is the Tunis International Centre for Environmental Technologies (Centre International des Technologies de l’Environnement de Tunis, CITET) which majorly works on facilitating environmental technologies in the country (REEGLE NA). 120 people are employed at CITET. Its annual budget is around TD 8 million (€4 million) of which 60% are provided by the international community.
- Overall co-ordination and funding for policies and programmes
The national energy policy in Tunisia is developed by the Ministry of Industry and Energy (Ministère de l’Industrie, de l’Energie et des Petites et Moyennes Entreprises, TMIE). In particular the Directorate General for Energy of the TMIE is responsible for planning and implementation.
Energy Efficiency Funds
Grant programmes for energy efficiency and solar water heaters are financed through the National Energy Fund (FNME). Law N° 2005-106 from December 19, 2005 is “representing a quantum leap towards the choice of an extra budgetary resource for financing the public support to energy conservation investment, and this is based on the granting of allowances“ (ASEM 2011, p. 18). The resources of the fund are supplied by tax measures, including levies on car registration as well as import or production of air-conditioners. Since the Fund’s resources are not sufficient to cover all projects concerning energy efficiency and renewable energy planned in Tunisia, international banks provided two concessionary credit lines (RCREEE 2010, p. 13). Further capital comes from GEF, which, as an example, financed the establishment of energy services companies (GEF NA), and from FGEF (French Global Environment Fund).
Minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) for buildings & equipment
Minimum Energy Performance Standards for buildings are of special importance in developing countries because the rate of new construction is very high.
For new buildings in the public sector, thermal insulation is obligatory since April 2005. Temperature requirements in buildings depend on the location of the building. ANME sub-divided Tunisia in three zones. The thermal insulation regulation is combined with PROMO-ISOL, a promotional programme for insulation, which is intended to help insulate 20,000 homes and 1,500 tertiary sector buildings (RCREEE 2010, p. 11). PROMO-ISOL is funded by an AFD credit line and offers about 20 TD (ca. €10) per m2 of insulated roof over a credit period of five to ten years. According to reegle, the revolution of 2011 did not have major consequences on the Tunisian energy sector, however, PROMO-ISOL still seems to be in a planning stage ( ).
Established as a legal framework in Article 10 of Law 2004-72 (revised 2009-7) new buildings and extensions to existing buildings are required to meet a minimum energy performance standard. “Residential improvements for new buildings include efficient windows for sunlight and shading, insulation and solar panels. Subsidies help energy users comply with efficiency measures. In partnership with AFD [Agence Française de Développement], a new insulation technique project has been launched” (Bahri 2011, p. 3).
The thermal insulation regulation is combined with PROMO-ISOL, a promotional programme for insulation, and PROSOL for solar water heaters (cf. more detail under ‘Incentives and financing’).
Mandatory energy performance certificates & equipment labels
A mandatory energy performance labelling scheme is being implemented for four different buildings types: offices, multi-occupancy apartments, which have been running since January 2010, and for community buildings and factories, which will be implemented later (RCREEE 2010). The labelling system consists of eight levels visualised through eight bars. The first four bars are for buildings exceeding the minimum requirements. The fifth one means that the respective building is in line with the MEPS while bar six to eight refer to (existing or non-regulated) buildings performing worse than the MEPS.
Provision of information
France supports the Tunisian government in copying the French network of Local Energy Information Centres. These centres provide information (free of charge) to the public on how to save energy. As the building owner rate is quite high (>83%), the population growth is stable and 61% of Tunisians live in urban areas, a trend that steadily increases (urbanisation rate: 3.6% annually), these information centres may have a big impact in the North African country.
As described in the policy roadmap section, there is a communication and awareness programme, which includes television, radio and print advertisement. Further actions to raise awareness on energy efficiency are also implemented and the focus lies on informing the public about improving comfort in buildings, trying to involve the consumers in sustainable development and to put an emphasis on the saving opportunities for families. There is also a focus on improving co-operation with, and among, professionals from the building sector, like national and international consultancies, promoters, architects, heating engineers, and researchers through organising awareness events and seminars, for example (FEEM et al. 2010, p. 16).
Financial Incentives and Financing
PROMO-ISOL (short for Development of roof thermal insulation) is a financial incentive scheme for residential builders to invest in thermal insulation of roofs by “providing a subsidy per m2 of insulated roof combined with a soft loan for remaining costs” (KfW 2010, p. 3). The programme is funded by an AFD credit line and is to help insulate 20,000 homes and 1,500 tertiary sector buildings (RCREEE 2010, p. 11). As the housing ownership rate is estimated to be at over 83% (Antipolis 2011, p. 79), such financial incentives are believed to be absorbed by the public quite well. The subsidy offered by ANME will be close to TD3/m2 (€1.67/m2). Local banks are to provide soft loans, ca. TD 20/m2 (€10/m2) per m2 of insulated roof over a credit period of five to ten years, in order to enable builders to pay the remaining amount of the investment cost.
A network of controllers e.g. composed of architects and engineers etc, will safeguard the implementation of standards. PROMO-ISOL seems to be primarily a measure for higher income levels as they use energy consuming appliances such as air-conditioners and refrigerators while lower-income levels do not have such equipment and, moreover, use biomass for heating, in general (KfW 2010, p. 3).
Apart from financial incentives, awareness towards energy efficient construction is to be raised by the programme. The lack of awareness is a core barrier to the implementation of sufficient thermal insulation.
According to Reegle, the revolution of 2011 did not have major consequences on the Tunisian energy sector, however, PROMO-ISOL still seems to be in a planning stage ( ).
PROSOL (Programme de promotion des CES, promotion programme for solar water heaters) is a programme for the development of the Tunisian solar water heater industry in order to replace fossil energies, in particular liquid petroleum gas (LPG), which is highly subsidised by the government. The programme includes several incentives for suppliers as well as for residential households as end-users. In the case of suppliers, PROSOL provides a VAT exemption for finished or semi-finished products and raw materials, as well as from customs duties, as they are deemed as imported products or raw materials. Additionally, there is a top-down and a bottom-up quality assurance system for suppliers and their products, which are marketed within the programme framework to ensure aftersales service and improve the public image of the solar water heater.
Regarding the end-users PROSOL includes the provision of a direct public subsidy for buying a solar water heater. Furthermore, for the remaining costs of the solar water heater, approximately 80%, PROSOL provides direct and simplified access to bank financing with credit recovery over 5 years via the electricity bill.
|Policy roadmap and targets for Ultra-Low-Energy Buildings||Implemented||
Quadrennial plans set targets for energy efficiency. Current plan from 2009-2014 sets target to improve the energy efficiency indicator to 275 kg oil equivalent per 1000 dinars of GDP at constant prices in 2014.
Bilateral and multilateral donors offer technical and financial resources in order to improve energy efficiency in the Tunisian building stock.
ANME was established in 1985 and is in charge of increasing energy efficiency and diversifying energy sources
|Energy efficiency funds||Implemented||
There is a National Energy Fund (FNME), which provides financial incentives for energy efficiency and renewable energy
|Energy saving obligations for energy companies||Not Implemented||
|Removal/reform of subsidies to end-user energy prices and on energy supply||Implemented||
By 2017 subsidies are to be phased out.
|Regulation of energy companies||Implemented||
The Tunisian Company of Electricity and Gas (STEG), which is a public and non -administrative company, having the monopoly for electricity distribution in Tunisia, has been appointed by the government to manage the PROSOL programme’s credit line.
|Minimum energy performance standards (MEPS)||Implemented||
There are insulation and thermal requirements for new buildings.
|Mandatory energy performance certificates & equipment labels||Implemented||
Buildings can be ranked on eight levels. Level five indicates a building fulfilling the MEPS, buildings with a level between six to eight perform worse.
|Energy advice & assistance during design and construction||Not Implemented||
|Provision of information||Implemented||
A Local Energy Information Network is planned in cooperation with France. There is a communication and awareness programme, and further actions to raise awareness on energy efficiency are implemented as well.
|Financial Incentives for ULEB and deep retrofits||Implemented||
Promo-isol and Prosol provide both, grant and soft-loans in order to promote energy-efficient construction and solar water heaters.
Promo-isol and Prosol provide both, grant and soft-loans in order to promote energy-efficient construction and solar water heaters.
|Education & training||Implemented||
Energy efficiency construction requires a trained workforce. For example, this is done by the Ministry of Education and Training.
|Funding for research, development and demonstration (RD&D) projects||Implemented||
43 demonstration residential and non-residential building projects are conducted.