Access to information and open data

Adopting a legal framework by June 2019 for open data and to submit a draft law on the reuse of public data.

Completion Status:
Partially fulfilled

Commitment filtering:


The commitment is specific as it mentions a specific anti-corruption mechanism and a transparency tool, namely access to information and open data.


This commitment is measurable as we can check if the government did or did not establish a legal framework for open data and we can also track the submission of a draft law on the reuse of public data.

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The 2016 access to information law is the baseline from which the Tunisian government started working on open data. The law was implemented as a result of the efforts1,2 and advocacy civil society in Tunisia.

The e-administration unit of the presidency has begun the process of drawing up an open data decree, which is a specific legal framework to harmonise the actions and approaches of the administration as a whole.

To do this, five-day workshops were organised in collaboration with the World Bank from 28 May to 1 June 2018 to study and discuss the content, form and level of details of this decree.3

The different stages of the implementation of the regulatory text organising the opening of public data were as follows:

  • submission of the draft to some ministries and public structures for consultation and, following their comments, to the Access to information Authority
  • release of the draft open data decree for public consultation from 7 to 27 March 2019
  • final draft submitted December 2019

The e-administration unit continued its public data inventory by organising meetings with relevant ministries, such as the Ministry of Equipment and Housing and the Ministry of Defense.

The unit then organised capacity building sessions dedicated to open data focal points, open data publishing, data management and analysis, leadership and open data for high-level officials, the legal framework of open data and the management of Comprehensive Knowledge Archive Network CKAN platform.4

A national hackathon on the reuse of open public data was held in January 20205 and was a national competition launched by the e-administration unit to implement the 3 OGP action plan and, specifically, its commitment to strengthening the open data ecosystem in Tunisia.

The government had an open government guide for local government as part of their action plan 2016-2018.6

Onshor a Tunisian NGO that encourages transparency in government projects assisted the government through the OGP process through sharing their knowledge and expertise in open data, and financing servers and technical resources for open data7 mainly in four projects in Baladiti, the open data portal for Tunisian municipalities. Baladiti provides access to a variety of open data related to municipal activities, such as the budget, public procurement and municipal council meeting minutes. Other open data initiatives include Datatransport, for the transport sector,8 Cabrane,9 to follow up on public construction, and Agri data,10 an official open data portal developed in partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture and Onshor.

A local open government guide was developed under the Francophone Open Government Support Program (PAGOF).11 This guide will improve the transparency and openness of local authorities.

Despite all these efforts from the e-administration unit, workshops involving all stakeholders to draft the law, data collecting efforts and capacity building for various ministries and departments, the decree has not been delivered.

Challenges to effective commitment implementation
There is no existing legal framework to regulate the opening up of public data processes within public institutions or identify the shared technical frameworks that can be adopted.12

The political aspect is also challenging as the Tunisian access to information authority and the national personal data protection organisations have concerns that public data could be misused and affect personal data use, as mentioned by Onshor in an interview.

The Tunisian administration face problems in the inventory of documents and data that can be published as open data in accordance with the law of access to the information.

Opportunities to accelerate commitment implementation
This commitment was presented in the national action plan 2018-2020 under the supervision of OGP, and has been a national priority since its launch in 2016.13 It is included found in the Tunisian statement from the UK anti-corruption summit 2016: “We commit to reinforcing the recently adopted Right To Information law and in that purpose to promote effective accountability and to provide open data on public contracting activities without impairing technological and commercial bidding companies’ interests”.14 As this commitment crosses between the open government action plan, the UK summit commitment and IACC commitments, this might increase its chances of being implemented.

At an international level, the Tunisian government has been working on the recommendations of the steering committee under the presidency of Georgia and France, and two civil society representatives, World Resource Institute and Open Democracy Advice Center.

To accelerate the adoption of a legal framework for open data and the submission of the draft of law on the reuse of public data, Tunisia should review the initial draft of the decree and share it with stakeholders to guarantee its efficiency and its accordance with the current technological situation.

The access to information law should be updated to cover open data in all its aspects.

The presidency of the government should focus on accelerating the inventory of administrative documents so that their digitalisation process becomes easier and practical.

  1. Shems FM, ‘I Watch’ préoccupée face au retrait du gouvernement du projet de loi sur le droit d’accès à l’information,
    14 July 2015
  2. Nawaat, Projet de loi relatif au droit d’accès à l’information : avancées et réserves
    16 May 2015
  3. 9 October 2018
  4. ·
  5. 7 December 2018
  6. OGP Tunisia, Engagement 2 : Instaurer le cadre juridique et organisationnel facilitant l’ouverture des données publiques
    13 March 2019
  7. ·
  8. Datatransport homepage,
  9. Cabrane open data project,
  10. AgriData homepage,
  11. 2018
  12. OGP Tunisia, Engagement 2 : Instaurer le cadre juridique et organisationnel facilitant l’ouverture des données publiques,
    13 March 2019
  13. ·
  14. 2016