North Africa (Tunisia, Libya, Morocco, Egypt, Algeria)

Since the political upheavals in 2011, Switzerland has focused its commitment on supporting the economic and social transitions in Tunisia and Egypt. Swiss projects are geared towards promoting democracy and human rights, sustainable and inclusive economic development and employment, as well as issues to do with migration and protection.

Map of the region North Africa (Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Libya)
© FDFA

The North Africa region comprises several countries with very different profiles, but whose geopolitical significance and proximity to Europe makes them all important partners for Switzerland. All these countries are struggling with the same challenges: high unemployment, especially among young people; widespread corruption; regional disparities; political, economic and social exclusion; a fragile security situation; a stagnating economy and strong migratory flows.

Democratic transition and human rights

Switzerland helps to strengthen the rule of law, human rights, political dialogue and civil society. In Tunisia, Switzerland supported the electoral processes in 2011 and 2014 and provided experts on constitutional issues. Switzerland also helps Tunisia and Egypt to deal with the legacy of the past and supports their public institutions’ efforts to become more transparent.

State and Economic Reforms

Engagement in fragile contexts and prevention of violent conflicts

Sustainable and inclusive economic development and employment

Switzerland helps to improve economic prospects by running innovative and pragmatic projects, with a view to boosting international competitiveness and economic conditions. It also shares its experience in vocational education and training and promotes the sustainable use of natural resources. For example, since 2012 the SDC has supported the modernisation of the water and waste water sector by running a project in Aswan, one of Egypt's disadvantaged provinces (or ‘governorates’). The project is aimed at the 100,000 inhabitants of the El-Nassereya quarter, where a new reservoir capable of holding 2,000 m3 of water has been built.

Basic education and vocational training

Private Sector Development and financial services 

Migration and protection

North Africa has a tradition of strong migratory flows within its different countries and the region and of being a point of departure for Europe for people leaving their homelands for economic or conflict reasons. Many of them fall victim to violence and exploitation. Switzerland works with local authorities, their diaspora abroad and international and bilateral organisations, protecting and assisting vulnerable migrants and victims of human trafficking and promoting their rights. Through the Tunisian Red Crescent, Switzerland provides emergency aid for refugees rescued at sea and migrants in transit camps.

Migration

History of cooperation

Since 2011, Switzerland’s commitment in North Africa is implemented by various Federal Administration offices: the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), the Human Security Division (HSD), the FDFA’s Directorate of Political Affairs, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and the State Secretariat for Migration (SEM). In its 2017–20 international cooperation strategy Switzerland focuses its commitment on democratic transition and human rights; sustainable and inclusive economic development and employment; and migration and protection. In Egypt and Tunisia, Switzerland is active in all three of these areas, while in Morocco it is conducting a more limited programme. In Libya and Algeria, it is providing humanitarian aid, and is also active in peacebuilding in Libya.

Links

Projects Egypt

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Forging a common «Nile culture» through music and academic training

Nile Project musicians on a boat.

01.05.2015 - 18.11.2018

To make the Nile Basin a common ground and shared ecosystem for the inhabitants of the eleven countries through which the Nile River flows, the SDC supports the innovative musical and educational Nile Project. The project brings together artists, students and concerned citizens. A series of acclaimed concerts has taken place since 2013; at the same time, students are developing initiatives to foster a better use of water resources.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Egypt
Economy and Employment
Education
Migration
Rule of Law - Democracy - Human rights
Education
Environment
Rule of Law - Democracy - Human rights
Economy and Employment
Culture
Disaster Risk Reduction – Preparedness
Education policy
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development
Environment protection
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development
Vocational training and skills development
Access to information incl. support to media and ICT
Mitigation of the effects of climate change
Culture
Human rights (incl. Women's rights)
Migration generally (development aspects and partnerships)
Protection and access
EDUCATION
OTHER SOCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE AND SERVICES
INDUSTRY
HUMANITARIAN AID
EDUCATION
INDUSTRY
GENERAL ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
GOVERNMENT AND CIVIL SOCIETY
OTHER SOCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE AND SERVICES
COMMUNICATIONS
GENERAL ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
HUMANITARIAN AID
Education policy and administrative management
Culture and recreation
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development
Disaster prevention and preparedness
Vocational training
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development
Environmental policy and administrative management
Human rights
Culture and recreation
Information and communication technology (ICT)
Biosphere protection
Material relief assistance and services

01.05.2015 - 18.11.2018


CHF 792'800



Economic prospects for young people in rural areas

Farmers are being trained on the vertical tomatoes planting techniques which double their production. ©DDC

01.01.2013 - 31.12.2018

The SDC project in rural Aswan Governorate in Egypt aims to improve the economic prospects of local young men and women. The SDC promotes enterprises in the agricultural, livestock breeding and fisheries sectors to create new jobs and provide young people with an alternative to migrating to urban centres.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Egypt
Agriculture and Food Security
Education
Economy and Employment
Labor market development
Agriculture value-chain development
Vocational training and skills development
Agriculture value-chain development
Vocational training and skills development
OTHER SOCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE AND SERVICES
EDUCATION
MULTISECTOR or CROSS-CUTTING
EDUCATION
MULTISECTOR or CROSS-CUTTING
Employment policy and administrative management
Vocational training
Rural development
Vocational training
Rural development

01.01.2013 - 31.12.2018


CHF 5'020'000






Potable Water Management Programme (PWMP) in Upper Egypt

01.07.2017 - 31.12.2027

Egypt is a water scarce country and has enormous needs in better managing water resources and reducing water losses as well as water consumption, as a prerequisite for inclusive economic development. This programme contributes to improved potable water management and service provision in the targeted affiliated Water & Wastewater Companies (WWCs) and to providing equal access to a reliable potable water supply system to deprived and informal areas in the economically disadvantaged governorates of Upper Egypt.



StARS Organizational Development and Legal Support Initiative

01.09.2016 - 31.08.2019

St.Andrew’s Refugee Services (StARS) provides educational, legal, psychosocial services to a total of 19,000 refugees and migrants. With the shrinking number of refugee service providers and the increasing numbers of transit refugees and migrants, StARS expanded its services in 2015, to cover legal support and meet the growing gap of needs. This project aims to improve protection services for the most vulnerable refugees and migrants by developing StARS’ organizational capacity and strengthen internal mechanisms.




Water Programme Aswan, Component 3: Water Efficiency and Economic Support (WEE) in Nasr El Nuba and Kom Ombo

01.07.2012 - 31.03.2018

Egypt is a water scarce country and despite recent reforms in the water sector, major challenges remain. Based on needs identified by local authorities and past experiences by the Egyptian-Swiss Development Fund, the programme aims to improve public water supply and management, increase management and income from rehabilitated irrigation systems as well as sensitizing the population about water-related issues.


Hayenna: Integrated Urban Development Project in Egypt

30.06.2017 - 30.06.2022

This project should enhance the organizational capacity of local government units to better manage their land and linked local revenues. Furthermore, the project activities shall also support ongoing efforts aimed at improving the related legal and institutional frameworks at the national level. This project will be implemented by UN-Habitat.

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Projects Libya

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Projects Morocco

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North Africa Cultural Programme

01.07.2017 - 30.06.2025

Le programme fournit un cadre pour un appui à la Culture comme vecteur d’échanges et de dialogue entre les personnes et les sociétés civiles en Afrique du Nord. Il contribue aux processus de transition politique, à la création d’opportunités de développement économique et à une vision positive de la migration. Il renforce la capacité des peuples d’Afrique du Nord à mettre en valeur leur patrimoine et aux jeunes de la région à exprimer pacifiquement leurs aspiration et leur inventivité.


ALCS: Assistance des Migrants subsahariens Victimes de Violences Sexuelles

01.07.2016 - 31.12.2017

Les Migrant(e)s Subsaharien(ne)s (MSS) sont particulièrement expoé(e)s aux violences au cours de leur voyage migratoire comme lors de leur séjour au Maroc. Les conséquences de ces vilences se répercutent sur leur santé physique et mentale, ainsi que sur leurs conditions sociales. Parmi les MSS, les femmes et leurs enfants sont les plus vulnérables. Ce projet vise à offrir aux migrant(e)s survivant(e)s des violences sexuelles une assistance médicale et sociale d'urgence ainsi qu'un suivi médical physique et psychologique. 


Caritas Maroc : Promouvoir l’exercice des droits humains des migrants au Maroc

01.04.2016 - 31.03.2019

Morocco is a country of transit and destination for migrants and refugees, 20’000 of which live on the margins of society, despite Morocco in 2014 adopting a first ever migration strategy, promising the respect of human rights and access to public services. Caritas enables 3’000 vulnerable migrants per year - mainly women and children - to translate access rights into access reality, and coaches public and civil society service providers to care for the specific needs of the new clients.


Swiss Capacitiy-Building Facility (SCBF): North Africa Contribution

10.12.2015 - 31.12.2018

Formal financial inclusion is critical for pro-poor economic growth and remains low in North Africa. The intervention aims to increase well-being and livelihood of low-income people and smallholder farmers, through financial inclusion. The SCBF focuses on tailor-made technical assistance to partner financial institutions to up-scale sustainable and client-oriented financial services offered responsibly. The contribution leverages the expertise of the SCBF for financial inclusion in North Africa and seeks synergies with other North Africa projects.


Gestion intégrée des bassins versants au Moyen Atlas

20.11.2015 - 31.12.2017

L’érosion des sols au Maroc, sévère dans les montagnes de l’Atlas, est à la fois cause et indicateur des défis auxquels font face les populations vulnérables de la région: désastres naturels et précarité. L’intervention propose une approche innovante de gestion intégrée des bassins versants qui augmentera durablement la résilience des populations locales, tout en améliorant leurs conditions de vie. L’engagement fort du Maroc pour sa réplication future à l’échelle nationale permet un effet multiplicateur considérable.


ONU Femmes: Accès aux Services judiciaires pour des femmes et des enfants victimes de la traite des êtres humains au Maroc

01.09.2015 - 28.02.2018

Malgré les réformes initiées au niveau juridique et institutionnel, la traite des personnes reste un phénomène croissant au Maroc. La mise ne place d'un mécanisme national de lutte contre la traite coordonnée entre de nombreux services publics et les acteurs de la socitété civile est nécessaire pour une meilleure protection des victimes. Les récents développements juridiques et polititques ont dynamisé la lutte contre la traite. La phase actuelle du projet vise à améliorer la protection des victimes à travers un appui technique et une meilleure coordination. 


Programme Development North Africa

01.07.2015 - 30.06.2018

Originally conceived to support the development of activities under the Swiss North Africa Programme launched from scratch in 2011, the 5th phase with a much reduced budget allows deepening relevant thematic and context knowledge, developing and formulating future strategic priorities and setting-up adapted or new projects for SDC in a fragile and complex environment. For 2015-16 the focus is on preparatory work for the Swiss North Africa programme 2017-20.


Médecins du Monde Belgique: Tamkine Migrants (Promouvoir l’intégration médicale des femmes migrantes au Maroc)

01.05.2015 - 30.04.2018

La nouvelle politique migratoire présentée par le Maroc en septembre 2013 offre une opportunité pour la concrétisation de la volonté du pays de respecter ses engagements internationaux envers les migrants et leur intégration. Pour des raisons administratives, financières ou par manque de capacités, les institutions marocaines ne sont pas encore en mesure de généraliser leur prestations aux femmes migrantes vulnérables. Ce projet vise à améliorer l’accès médico-psycho-social des femmes migrantes au Maroc (Rabat et Oujda) en institutionnalisant et transférant le savoir-faire de la société civile aux structures publiques.


ONUDI: Développement de la chaîne de valeur AZIR à l’Oriental (AZIR-O)

15.12.2014 - 31.12.2018

L’agriculture crée 4 millions d’emplois au Maroc, surtout en milieu rural, où les produits du terroir présentent un grand potentiel pour améliorer les conditions de vie des populations vulnérables. Le projet vise l’amélioration de l’accès aux marchés et des conditions socio-économiques des coopératives et cueilleurs, souvent précaires, au sein de la chaîne de valeur romarin dans la région de l’Oriental. Il complémente ainsi le travail du SECO sur deux autres filières et lie les différentes activités suisses dans une approche programmatique cohérente.


Multi-Country Investment Climate Program

01.01.2017 - 31.12.2024

The Multi-Country Investment Climate Program (MCICP) supports investment climate reform advisory in a total of 20 SECO partner countries. It is implemented by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a globally recognized leader in this field.


Disaster Risk Financing and Insurance (DRFI) Phase II

01.12.2016 - 31.12.2021

SECO is partnerning with the World Bank to implement the Disaster Risk Financing and Insurance (DRFI) Program to support primarily SECO priority countries in building their financial resilience to natural disasters. Countries receive technical assistance helping them in their advance planning of financing needs in the case of natural disasters.


PAMPAT- Facilitating market access for typical agro products

01.11.2013 - 31.12.2018

The project aims at improving performance, market access and socio-economic conditions of the the harissa (chili pepper paste), the fig of Djebba and the prickly pear value chains in Tunisia. It strengthens the governance, the productivity, the quality compliance with labels and the product development of these products.

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Projects Tunisia

Object 1 – 12 of 25

Vocational skills development in Tunisia – destination employment

In Tunisia, an SDC programme enables young job seekers to acquire the technical and social skills required in the workplace

01.01.2016 - 31.12.2020


An SDC programme boosts the employability of young Tunisians entering the job market. It provides them with training in vocational skills to equip them with the practical experience and know-how required in the workplace.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Tunisia
Vocational training and skills development
Labor market development
EDUCATION
OTHER SOCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE AND SERVICES
Vocational training
Employment policy and administrative management

01.01.2016 - 31.12.2020


CHF 9'603'475



Fifteen thousand jobs created in Tunisia since the revolution

01.07.2011 - 31.03.2018

The I-SEMER project (Swiss initiative for jobs and rural micro and small enterprises) aimed to create 10,000 jobs for young people in four disadvantaged governorates of Tunisia over a period of four years. It has exceeded its objective. This project, which has been developed in cooperation with Tunisian partners, was Switzerland's first operational support in the vulnerable zones of post-revolution Tunisia.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Tunisia
Economy and Employment
Labor market development
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development
OTHER SOCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE AND SERVICES
INDUSTRY
Employment policy and administrative management
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development

01.07.2011 - 31.03.2018


CHF 8'441'000



Planned project

Transition redevable pour la société tunisienne (TRUST)

01.03.2022 - 28.02.2028

L’intervention contribue à l’émergence d’un système de redevabilité durable, veillant au respect de l’Etat de droit, favorisant la réactivité, l’efficacité et la confiance des citoyennes et des citoyens dans les institutions publiques. Elle soutient de manière ciblée les capacités de partenaires publics et de la société civile à exercer leurs rôles dans la régulation, la surveillance et le contrôle de l’activité publique par une approche transversale et complémentaire aux soutiens existants.


Redevabilité, sécurité et prévention de l’extrémisme violent pour les citoyennes et citoyens tunisiens RESPECT

01.12.2020 - 30.11.2026

L’intervention renforce la gouvernance du secteur de sécurité tunisien et les capacités institutionnelles de prévention de l’extrémisme violent. Elle contribue ainsi à une meilleure protection des citoyennes et des citoyens tunisiens à travers une assistance vers une gestion de la sécurité redevable et efficace, et à travers un soutien à la définition et à la mise en œuvre de politiques publiques limitant le phénomène de l’extrémisme violent.

 


Plateforme d'assistance aux migrants dans le Grand Tunis et la région de Sfax

01.07.2016 - 30.06.2018

Les populations migrantes en Tunisie recontrent de nombreuses poblématiques d'ordre juridique, social ou administratif. Le projet prévoit une continuité du service de la "Maison du Droit et des Migrations" à Tunis comme lieu de référence, d'acceuil, d'orientation et d'assistance individualisée aux migrants, avec une expansion géographique à Sfax. Comme complément, le projet développera des partenariats avec le secteur public avec un renforcement de capacité de celui-ci et favorisera l'élaboration, de manière conjointe, d'outil d'acoompagnement au profit des migrants vulnérables. 


Renforcement du Croissant Rouge Tunisien en tant qu'acteur de changement

15.12.2015 - 30.06.2018

Disposant d'un réseau d'envirion 10'000 bénévoles, le Croissant Rouge Tunisien (CRT) constitue l'organisation caritative la plus importante en Tunisie. Ce projet vise à développer les capacités du CRT à travers le développement organisationnel, le renforcement des capacités des ressources humaines et le développement institutionnel afin qu'il puisse répondre à son mandat de manière fiable et professionnelle. Le partage des responsabilités entre le Gouvernement et le CRT comme acteur de la société civile et auxiliaire de l'État permettra une performance et un engagement plus importants par exemple dans la migration. 


PNUD Croissance Inclusive & Développement Humain

15.12.2015 - 31.12.2017

Quatre ans après la Révolution, la Tunisie n'a pas renoué avec une planification ciblant la lutte contre la pauvreté. L'intervention accompagnera le Gouvernement dans ses efforts pour implémenter des politiques publiques visant des progrès significatifs en matière de réduction de la pauvreté, d'inclusion et création d'emplois, surtout pour les jeunes et le femmes. Elle contribuera ainsi à l'atteinte des priorités nationales tout en complétant et en accompagnant judicieuesement les projets suisses en Tunisie. 


Programme de soutien au processus électoral en Tunisie

01.11.2015 - 31.10.2018

La pérennisation du processus électoral est une étape fondamentale de la consolidation de la transition démocratique en Tunisie. Ce programme contribuera à l’institutionnalisation des autorités électorales indépendantes, ainsi qu’à l’organisation opérationnelle des scrutins 2016. De plus, il contribuera à la sensibilisation des citoyens, en particulier les jeunes et les femmes, avec comme objectif d’une participation importante de leurs parts dans les processus de prises de décisions. Vu son engagement dans le processus électoral en Tunisie depuis 2011, la Suisse est aujourd’hui considérée comme un partenaire crédible et impartial.




Support of the energy transition plan for municipalities

01.07.2017 - 31.08.2020

The program 'Alliance of Municipalities for Energy Transition' (ACTE) aims to support municipalities in the energy transition by providing them with original technical and financial solutions adapted to the local context. SECO will support the implementation of the ACTE program while introducing the ACTE/MENA Energy Award label (ACTE/MEA).


Multi-Country Investment Climate Program

01.01.2017 - 31.12.2024

The Multi-Country Investment Climate Program (MCICP) supports investment climate reform advisory in a total of 20 SECO partner countries. It is implemented by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a globally recognized leader in this field.

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