Name of municipality: El-Guettar

Population: 20,137 inhabitants (2014)

Area: 907 km2

El Guettar is a commune located in the southwest of Tunisia. It is a town 20 km southeast of Gafsa towards Gabes, 20 km from the Gafsa-El Ksar airport and 130 km from the port of Gabes.

President: Mr. Mabrouk Ammar

Contact Person: Mr. El Hadj Riadh—Member of the City Council:

Main features:

The city grew near a 450-hectare oasis located at the foot of the Jebel Orbata mountain range (1,165 meters) and close to a sabkha (a coastal mudflat in which evaporite-saline minerals accumulate). The oasis is renowned for its pistachio trees.

Main economic activities:

The Southwest Region is characterized by an important agricultural activity, alongside tourist and industrial activities, namely in specialized hubs. Throughout the region, agriculture remains a dominant industry both as an economic sector because of its contribution to employment, to national agricultural production, especially for certain products such as dates or red meats, but also as a form of development of natural resources and spatial planning.

There is only one 20 ha industrial zone on the territory of El Guettar.

The municipality of El-Guettar was declared a tourist zone in 2012 (decree 283 of May 29, 2012). However, tourism has not been developed so far, despite the richness of the region in major historical and environmental sites and despite the efforts of the municipality and associations for the improvement of alternative tourism and the development of citizen and solidarity-based initiatives.

Conditions and Environmental Challenges:

The climatic characteristics of the southwest region are influenced by local conditions such as terrain and vegetation (oasis). The influence of topography is reflected in wind speed, air temperature and rainfall. The effect of the vegetation is very localized and favors microclimatic conditions that make life in the oases less austere.

The El-Guettar municipality has adopted a few basic principles aimed at integrating a sustainable development component in all decisions relating to local development. The municipality is always considering the principles for taking energy aspects into consideration in future action programs so that these fit in with the new vision of local development and job creation and the revitalization of the territory.