Tunisian parliament has approved the Startup Act, a law which will supposedly turn Tunisia into a startup nation.
The approval, which comes after more than two years of deliberation within the parliament, will offer relief to many Tunisian entrepreneurs long seeking for a better climate to run or start their ventures.
Apparently, the Startup Act comes with perks such as exemption for startups from corporate taxes for up to eight years, special custom procedures, exemption from capital gains tax on investments made in startups, up to one year of time off from their current jobs (for both private and public sector employees), and salary for up to three founders during the first year of operations.
Since the Arab Spring of 2011, Tunisia’s new democracy has struggled to enact prudent economic policy to provide employment and opportunities for its young, growing population. And thanks to faster and freer access to the internet, as well as advancement in technology, the country’s startup scene has grown in large part since 2011. But with the Startup Act, Tunisian economy will have truly advanced to the digital age.
Back in Nigeria, most businesses (more so, startups) don’t survive their first few years due to the economic hardship and the poor business environment. Seeing that the Tunisian government has implemented the Startup Act, Nigeria can take a cue from them.
Come to think of it, what Tunisia has done is not completely unheard of. In 2017, President of France, Emmanuel Macron announced his plans to make France a startup nation. Through that declaration, France now would think and move like a startup.
Compared to Tunisia, Nigeria has a more expanded and vibrant technology community, so a Startup Act of sort will have a strong use case in Nigeria surely.