Tunisia on the right track with green hydrogen development

The Federal State of Bavaria will support the development of research to explore the viability of manufacturing green hydrogen in Tunisia and importing it into Europe.

Tunisia has researched the issue of producing green hydrogen under a challenging global energy environment that is defined by shortages and rising energy costs.

Tunisia wants to position itself on the production of green hydrogen and intends to be among the major suppliers of this market by exporting it to Europe via the trans-Mediterranean gas pipeline that connects Algeria to Italy. Tunisia will do this by taking advantage of its proximity to Europe, its significant capacity to produce renewable energies, and its access to the Mediterranean. Because the effective adoption of clean hydrogen by the nations of North Africa, especially Tunisia, is crucial for Europe’s goal of being carbon neutral by 2050. A program for green hydrogen between Tunisia and Bavaria was also formally initiated.

A developing industry

This initiative, which intends to establish a Tunisian-Bavarian technology and innovation center for green hydrogen, is funded to the tune of 820,000 euros by the Federal State of Bavaria. Among other things, it will enable a study to be conducted that looks at the viability of creating green hydrogen in Tunisia and shipping it to Europe via the gas pipeline. Along with establishing an international green hydrogen network and providing advice and support to scientific, political, and economic players, it will also be in charge of enhancing the environment for investment.

“Today marks the beginning of a cooperative concept to support technical advancement and put everything in place for the development of green hydrogen in Tunisia. We shall talk about it in a cooperative manner. According to Belhassen Chiboub, Director General of Electricity and Renewable Energies at the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Energy, “hydrogen has not been around for very long, it is an emerging sector, and investments in this area are capital-intensive.

A million tonnes of green hydrogen would require an expenditure of 15 billion euros, it is further said. We must gradually commit to it, conduct all required research, and establish this cooperative relationship in order to eventually be able to build infrastructures and people capacities and have everything necessary to make this experiment successful.

According to Belhassen Chiboub, Director General of Electricity and Renewable Energies at the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Energy, “it is a developing business, and investments in this area are capital-intensive. A million tonnes of green hydrogen would require an expenditure of 15 billion euros, it is further said. We must gradually commit to it, conduct all required research, and establish this cooperative relationship in order to eventually be able to build infrastructures and people capacities and have everything necessary to make this experiment successful.

The pressing need to develop Tunisia-European collaboration

With tens of gigawatts of major renewable energy production capacity, Tunisia has the potential to serve as Europe’s energy supply for Chiboub. It’s not just about the issue of climate change; the issue of supply security is also becoming more and more important. And in order to ensure the security of energy supply, both in North African nations and in Europe, it is urgent to encourage all possible collaboration in this area, he added. He continued by saying that Tunisia has the benefit of the pipeline that connects Europe and North Africa, which could be utilized in the first phase to go from a mix of natural gas and hydrogen to 100% hydrogen by 2040 or possibly 2050 after doing the appropriate research.

Huml Mélanie, the Bavarian Minister for European and International Affairs, stated that the issue of green hydrogen is urgent and extremely important from a German perspective. After then, the study would be conducted as quickly as feasible. With the help of this analysis, Europe, which plans to build a green hydrogen network by 2030, will be able to decide whether to incorporate the trans-Mediterranean gas pipeline and estimate the production capacity from the available resources.

Hichem Anen, CEO of Steg, emphasized that a team of six engineers is now undergoing job training in Europe, constituting the first core of human resources who will work on the growth of the hydrogen sector, in reference to the need to produce green hydrogen in Tunisia. “I think we have all the components to be able to secure the production of green hydrogen and export to European nations,” he claimed. “We have this large green hydrogen project, on-site renewable generation, and the transcontinental gas pipeline.”

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