Tunisian Dinar (TND)

What Is Tunisian Dinar (TND)?

The term Tunisian dinar (TND) refers to the national currency of the Republic of Tunisia. The dinar is abbreviated with the ISO currency code TND and is represented by the symbol DT. The currency is issued and managed by the country's central bank. Banknotes are printed in values ranging from five to 50 dinar. A single dinar is divided into 1,000 millimes. Coins are minted in values from five to 100 millimes as well as smaller dinar values.

Key Takeaways

  • The Tunisian dinar is the official currency of the Republic of Tunisia.
  • Managed by the country's cental bank, it is abbreviated in the currency market as TND and has the currency symbol of DT.
  • TND banknotes are denominated in values ranging from 5 to 50 dinars, while coins are minted from 5 to 500 millimes and smaller dinar values.
  • The dinar is neither pegged to nor is pegged by any other currency.
  • Importing or exporting the TND is illegal under Tunisian law.

Understanding the Tunisian Dinar (TND)

Tunisia's currency is the dinar, which is maintained by the country's central bank, Banque Central de Tunisie, which translates to the Central Bank of Tunisia. The bank was established in 1958, two years after the country declared its independence from France. Along with currency management, the bank is responsible for monetary policy and banking supervision.

The dinar began circulating in Tunisia in 1960. Banknotes are denominated in DT5, DT10, DT20, and DT50. One dinar is divided into 1,000 millimes, which is the plural of a single milim. Coins are minted in five, 10, 20, 50, and 500 millimes and ½, one, and five dinars.

The TND isn't pegged to any currencies and there are no currencies that are pegged to the dinar. The currency is considered a closed one, which means it's illegal to import or export the dinar. Exchange services are only legal in the country. Any additional currency must be exchanged before leaving Tunisia. People traveling to Tunisia may also use credit and/or debit cards while in the country.

Tunisia is one of a number of countries that use variants of the dinar. Others include Algeria, Bahrain, Iraq, and Libya.

Special Considerations

Tunisia was under Roman occupation for many centuries until it fell under Ottoman rule, where it remained until 1881 when France invaded and seized control. During World War II, Nazis occupied Tunisia, and it was the site of several battles.

The country sought independence from France in 1956 and gained 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 movement that would later become known as the "Arab Spring."

History of the Tunisian Dinar (TND)

Tunisia began making plans for the dinar in 1958 but didn't start circulating it until 1960. That's the same year that it replaced the franc, which was established under French rule. The exchange rate set out was DT1 to 1,000 francs. The millim, which is a subunit of the dinar, was also established at that time.

The government began issuing dinar banknotes in values of DT½ DT1. and DT5—the only ones available at the time. Coins of the same value were also minted and put into circulation along with one, two, five, 10, 20, 50, and 100 millim coins. The central bank eliminated the DT½ DT1 banknotes, leaving them exclusively as coins.

The TND was initially pegged to the U.S. dollar at a rate of 0.42 dinars to $1. That rate was in place from the currency's inception until 1964, at which time it was devalued to a rate of 0.525 dinars to $1. This remained in place until it was completely devalued in 1971.

Tunisian Economy

Tunisia sits on the northernmost point of Africa and has fertile agricultural lands. It has an export-oriented economy, which is highly dependent on its petroleum and agricultural exports. It also has strong tourism and mining industries. Together, these sectors up a good portion of Tunisia's gross domestic product (GDP). The country is a lower-middle-income economy. It had an annual GDP growth of 3.3% in 2021. Total GDP hit $46.84 that year and the country reported an annual inflation rate of 5.7%.

What Is the Name of Tunisia's Currency?

Tunisia's currency is the Tunisian dinar (TND).

Does Tunisia Use U.S. Dollars?

No. Tunisia does not use U.S. dollars. Instead, it uses the official currency of Tunisia, the Tunisian dinar.

What Is the Best Currency to Take to Tunisia?

Importing dinars is illegal so you can't exchange any currency before you arrive in the country. You can, however, take any other currency with you into the country and exchange it when you arrive. You can also use credit and/or debit cards while traveling through Tunisia. Keep in mind that you can't export dinars either. This means you must convert any currency before you leave.

How Much Cash Can You Take to Tunisia?

Foreign currency may be imported into Tunisia in unlimited amounts, but you may be asked to declare the amount in writing on a specified form.

What Does Tunisian Currency Look Like?

Banknotes are denominated in five, 10, 20, and 50 dinars. One dinar is divided into 1,000 millimes. Coins come in values of five, 10, 20, 50, and 500 millimes as well as ½, one, and five dinars.

Article Sources
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  1. Banque Centrale de Tunisie. "CADRE LEGAL."

  2. Banque Centrale de Tunisie. "Tasks."

  3. OANDA. "Tunisian Dinar."

  4. Thomas Cook. "Tunisia Currency."

  5. Al Jazeera. "How Tunisia's Revolution Began."

  6. University of Central Arkansas. "French Tunisia (1881-1956)."

  7. Global Exchange. "The Tunisian dinar."

  8. The World Bank. "Tunisia."

  9. TunisPro. "Customs Regulations of Tunisia."

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