What Is the TND (Tunisian Dinar)?

TND (Tunisian dinar) is the ISO currency code for the official currency of the Republic of Tunisia, a country located on the Mediterranean coast of Northern Africa, and is subdivided into 1,000 milim, which is a term that comes from the Roman silver coin that was prevalent in the area in 211 B.C.

Key Takeaways

  • TND (Tunisian dinar) is the ISO currency code for the official currency of the Republic of Tunisia, a country located on the Mediterranean coast of Northern Africa.
  • TND is subdivided into 1,000 milim, which is a term that comes from the Roman silver coin that was prevalent in the area in 211 B.C.
  • Central Bank of Tunisia uses a crawling peg to set the TND's exchange rate and it is illegal to import, export, or convert it into other currencies.

Understanding the TND (Tunisian Dinar)

The TND can be further symbolized by the letters DT, which often denotes the currency in written form, such as 100 DT. The country was governed for many years by France, where the currency is known as dinar Tunisien and is where the written symbol originates. The TND is issued by the central bank of Tunisia. Bills are denominated in five, 10, 20, 30, 50 dinar while coins are minted in 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 milim and one-half, one, five dinar increments.

The Tunisian dinar (TND) replaced the French franc at a rate of 1,000:1 in 1960. As the franc fell in value, this initial exchange rate saw replacement with a U.S. dollar (USD) peg until 1971. Today, the Central Bank of Tunisia uses a crawling peg to set its exchange rate. It is illegal to import or export TND or to convert it into other currencies. If the person is leaving the country they may exchange a limited amount. As a result, many converting ATMs exist throughout the country for tourists.

Tunisia sits on the northernmost point of Africa and is a country with fertile agricultural lands. The area saw Roman occupation for nearly 800 years when it then fell under Ottoman rule until 1881. The country declared bankruptcy in 1869 and France invaded and seized the control of the country in 1881 with rule falling to the Vichy government. During World War II, Nazis occupied Tunisia, and it was the sight of several bitter battles.

The country sought independence from France in 1956 and had full freedom by July 1957. The successions of governments were uneventful until the 2011 Tunisian Revolution. Charging government corruption, and citing evidence of high unemployment and inflation, a civil resistance campaign ousted the ruling party and began the season that would become known as the Arab Spring. New elections and the seating of a new government came in 2014.

Economic Future for the Tunisian Dinar

Tunisia has an export-oriented economy, and its petroleum and agricultural exports make up a good portion of its gross domestic product (GDP). The EU is the country's most active trading partner, making the EUR/TND a common currency pair. According to the 2018 World Bank data, the Republic of Tunisia is a lower-middle income economy. It has an annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 2.5% with a yearly inflation deflator of 6.5%. 

The country is modernizing its infrastructure as it looks to the future. Many initiatives are underway, including:

  • Tunis Sports City began construction in 2009 and will include housing and several sports facilities and cost roughly US$5 billion.
  • Tunis Financial Harbor, currently under construction with an estimated budget of US$3 billion, hopes to become the financial services hub for the African continent.
  • Tunis Telecom City hopes to become an information technology center and is expected to cost US$3 billion.
  • Tunisia Economic City is slated to become a vibrant location, which will embrace technology and international exchange and to act as the economic link between Africa and the rest of the world.