Tunisia is a North African country bordering the Mediterranean Sea and the Sahara Desert. In the capital, Tunis, the Bardo Museum has archaeological exhibits from Roman mosaics to Islamic art. The city’s medina quarter encompasses the massive Al-Zaytuna Mosque and a thriving souk. To the east, the site of ancient Carthage features the Antonine Baths and other ruins, plus artefacts at the Carthage National Museum. In the north, Tunisia is mountainous, while the central part of the country features a dry plain. The southern part of Tunisia is semiarid and becomes arid desert closer to the Sahara Desert. Tunisia also has a fertile coastal plain called the Sahel along its eastern Mediterranean coast.
Historical, Cultural facts & Religion
At the beginning of recorded history, Tunisia was inhabited by Berber tribes. Its coast was settled by Phoenicians starting as early as the 12th century BC (Bizerte, Utica). The settlers of Carthage brought their culture and religion from Phoenicia, now present-day Lebanon and adjacent areas. Tunisia is 99 percent Muslim, and as with any Muslim country, there are cultural standards that should be followed. Religion is very important in Tunisian society, and its people are tolerant of other religions, meaning foreigners are free to practice their own religion. The month of Ramadan is followed in Tunisia. Islam is the official state religion in Tunisia. Approximately 99 percent of the population of the country is Sunni and at least nominally Muslim. The constitution of Tunisia states that the country’s “religion is Islam”, the government is the “guardian of religion”, and requires that the president be Muslim.
Brief City History
The Phoenicians founded Carthage in Tunisia in the 8th century BC. Carthage became a major world power fighting Rome in the Punic Wars until they were finally defeated in 146 BC. The area then became a Roman province for over 500 years. Looking at a map of modern Tunisia, you might be forgiven for thinking that this is a country that could only have ever been a bit-part player, a tiny speck trapped between the giants of Algeria and Libya. But Tunisia’s history is actually a rich and storied one, from the ruins of Carthage, whose ruler Hannibal dared to challenge Rome, to the glories of medieval Islam and into the forward-facing modern period. Africa is the cradle of humanity, and around 200,000 years ago Stone Age people were taking their first baby steps on Tunisian soil. This period was wetter than the present, and the Sahara was a long way from North Africa. Rather than sand, southern Tunisia was covered with forest and savannah (with animals to match), as remains discovered in oases like Kelibia have shown.
However, even ancient humans weren’t immune to climate change. At the end of the last Ice Age, some 8000 years ago, the Sahara began to dry and spread, isolating North Africa from the rest of the continent. Migrants arrived from the east, most notably the Capsian, named for the city of Gafsa, where many of their finely sculpted stone and bone implements have been excavated. The Capsian was well placed to take advantage of the new practices of agriculture and animal domestication introduced from the Nile Valley, settling into village life and developing sophisticated pottery. By about 1200 BC, the introduction of the horse into North Africa completed the picture. The Capsian was history, and the Berbers had arrived.
Language (s) Written & Spoken
The vast majority of the population today speaks Tunisian Arabic (also called Derja) as their native language, which is mutually intelligible to a high degree with other Maghrebi Arabic dialects. Most inhabitants are also literate in Modern Standard Arabic.
Important Types of Commerce in Tunisia
Tunisia’s market-oriented economy has been cited as a success in Africa and the Arab world. However, it has faced an array of challenges since the 2011 Arab Spring Revolution including high rates of unemployment and slow economic growth. After the failed socialist economic policies of the 1960s, Tunisia embarked on a strategy to bolster exports, tourism and foreign investment all of which are now the country’s economic pillars. The primary exports are petroleum products, food products, fertilizers, and chemicals. Liberal strategies coupled with investment in infrastructure and education fuel the 4-5% annual GDP growth. Economic policies spurred the economy into a continuous growth pattern until the mid-2000s when the government of former President Abidine Ben Ali was marred by corruption, mismanagement, nepotism, and wastage of funds. The cost of living and unemployment rose sharply, provoking the Arab Spring that led to the ouster of the president and the government. The economy went on a downfall as investments and tourism declined sharply. Inflation and falling global prices of crude oil worsened the situation and spiraled the country into lawlessness. Although calm was restored, the successive government remains under pressure to rebuild the economy and mitigate socio-economic challenges especially unemployment and high cost of living. Terror attacks continue to impede the tourism sector that is yet to recover from the 2011 Arab Spring. Strikes in the education and manufacturing sectors have also affected the economy negatively as the country struggles to attract capital and multinationals.
Language Services US and others will provide working with Tunisia
People can move from one place to another due to various reasons. Therefore, interpreting is necessary to ease understanding in communication. Some of the reasons may be an adventure, fleeing wars, employment, business and many others. Business, law, education, research, engineering, manufacturing, medical and some of the many fields that require professional translation and interpretation services when doing business in Tunisia. Proper understanding and knowledge of the local terminologies used is highly essential for essential and quality language service. Arabic is the major language spoken in Tunisia. Industry doing business with Tunisia will require accurate and consistent Arabic language services to grasp the wider market.
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