With the menace of the Islamic State (or ISIS) getting worse in the Middle East, should you be worried and sell property in Tunisia fast? Are you risking your safety and security by staying on in that beautiful country?
Tunisia is a small country in North Africa, which has a well deserved reputation as a rich and diverse country with plenty of attractions for tourists. Tunisia has a great history that goes back to the days of the great General Hannibal, considered to the one of the finest military minds ever.
Tunisia is a part of the Mediterranean, so you can expect the most perfect Mediterranean climate here – bright and sunny, warm and pleasant. The beaches here are lovely and the coastline is mostly unspoiled. Beachfront villas in Tunisia are in huge demand with foreign investors.
What makes Tunisia so popular with tourists is that it is located just 50 miles from the southern tip of Europe. So, it’s very easy for European tourists to simply hop on a plane and make their way to Tunisia in quick time.
There are a lot of people in Europe, especially in Britain, Sweden, Norway and Germany who like to spend their winters in the Mediterranean, and Tunisia serves as a convenient and affordable winter destination. Many foreign tourists have taken their love for Tunisia to the next level by buying a vacation home or second home here.
There’s much to like about the Tunisian people – they are friendly, polite and European in outlook. While a majority of Tunisians are Muslim, religion does not play as big a role in Tunisia as it does in many other Islamic nations. Tunisians are by nature, secular and liberal.
Properties in Tunisia are affordable, compared to other great holiday spots in the Mediterranean. It costs less than 100,000 GBP to buy a luxurious beachfront villa in Tunisia.
However, there is a risk that the growing threat of the Islamic State or the ISIS may spread to Tunisia as well. This was evident last year, on June 25, when 38 people were killed, most of them foreign tourists because of an ISIS attack on the popular beach resort of Sousse.
15 of those killed in the attack were from the UK. Brits are regular visitors to Tunisia and many own properties here. The terrorist strike at Sousse has made many want to sell their Tunisian properties and get out of the country before the threat from the ISIS gets any worse.
The attack on the foreign tourists at Sousse was not an isolated incident. There was a similar attack on tourists at the Bardo Museum in Tunis earlier in 2015, which led to several deaths as well.
Unfortunately, the attacks have come at the wrong time for Tunisia. The country’s economy hasn’t yet recovered fully from the events of the Arab Spring in 2011. Tourism is the biggest business by far in Tunisia and anything that drives away foreign tourists from the country is bound to have a catastrophic effect on the Tunisian economy.
What’s tragic is that the attacks have come at a time when the Tunisian government has taken a series of steps to ease up the regulations governing foreign ownership of property in the country. This is just an unfortunate consequence of being in a neighbourhood where terrorism has raised its ugly head.
But the threat from the ISIS should be neutralized soon, with an anti-ISIS alliance led by the United States taking shape. So, from the long term perspective, Tunisia is still a great place to buy an overseas property. However, in the present scenario, it doesn’t make sense to hold on to your property in Tunisia.