Investing in human resources
The promotion of human resources is for President Ben Ali a fundamental axis of the country's development strategy, granting priority to education, training and the improvement of the living conditions of the people. This approach model considers human development the best way to ensure both a sustained economic growth and a continuous improvement of the living conditions of the whole population.
A quarter of the annual state budget and 6% of the GDP is devoted to education: one Tunisian out of four is schooled and Tunisia can boast of abundant and quality human resources in all fields. The enrolment rate at University for the 19-24 years -old age group, has increased from 6% in 1987, to 31% in 2004. This rate should reach 50% in 2010 which is more than the average recorded in the OCDE countries and in the EEC which in 2004 was 40%.
Fully convinced that socio-economic progress is dependent upon the dissemination of knowledge, President Ben Ali has undertaken a global reform of the educational system, an upgrading of the professional training system and the implementation of numerous projects destined to increase the competency level and the adjustment of qualifications to the requirements of growth.
Providing young people with the means of their ambition
Thanks to an educational system which provides equal opportunities to all, and to diverse measures meant to foster a spirit of initiative among young people, the new generations do have today the capacity to realize their ambitions and to contribute to the progress of their country.
In addition to free education at all stages of public schooling, educational reform has made education compulsory until the age of 16.
The schooling rate of children of both sexes at schooling age, is more than 99%. The new educational programs prepare both pupils and students for modern life by instilling their minds with the values of tolerance, openness, and creativity.
Within 17 years, the number of university institutions has more than doubled, comprising 180 units offering more than a thousand specializations.
The budget for scientific research has reached 1% of the GDP in 2004, thus stimulating both creativity and innovation.