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Tunisia struggles to solve waste management problems

Tunisia struggles to solve waste management problems


Waste management has become a real puzzle for Tunisian authorities and private recycling agencies. The country currently produces about 2.3 million tonnes of waste according to official figures.

About 80 percent of this waste is appropriately disposed while about 20 percent ends up in inappropriate areas.

“Everyone is convinced that the way waste is managed should be changed. We should move towards an integrated management style which is an obligation nowadays from collection to treatment,” The General Manager of Tunisia’s National Agency for Waste Management, Abdelmajid Hamaouda, said.

Last month parliament amended the law to tighten sanctions on irresponsible waste disposal. The sentence ranges from 16 days to 3 months with a fine of 300 to one thousand euros. The environment ministry has announced plans to propose a draft law which prohibits the manufacturing of plastic bags.

“I doubt if the necessary measures for a good application have been provided. Are we sure corruption will not stop its good application … It remains vague,” an observer of the phenomenon said.

Government officials say they plan to invest about 70 million euros for better waste management from now until 2020.