Increasing trade flows: a final purpose? With the DCFTA, the EU offers Tunisia to sign an international treaty [2] to further open its economy: for goods, services and capital. Such an opening would affect all sectors of the economy, including agriculture. Customs duties would be put to an end and Tunisia would have to adjust and ultimately adopt EU standards so that its economy fully competes with European ones Forecasted risks for the economic and social rights of Tunisian citizens The DCFTA project risks to undermine Tunisian citizens’ economic and social rights for a number of reasons. In particular, many jobs may be lost in agriculture and services. Similarly, competition in the agricultural sector could threaten food security by increasing import dependence on cereals, which are the basis of Tunisia’s food habits Besides, loss of State budgetary resources (linked to the reduction in customs duties) will result either in less social and development expenditure or in tax increases. And if no specific provision is made, investment is likely to concentrate in the north-east of the country, deepening social and territorial inequalities Finally, the very well-being and health of citizens are threatened. Intellectual property measures could restrict access to medicines. The project is also likely to provide special jurisdiction for investors in the form of privation arbitration tribunals. That is, they would have the possibility to directly attack the Tunisian State if they consider that a law or a measure threatens their investments. [3] Hence, measures to protect the environment or public health, for instance, may not be adopted or implemented [4] because of such a disposition Uncertain benefits for Tunisia In return for Tunisia’s openness, the EU promises economic development, through better access to the European market, internationally recognised standards, and more investment in Tunisia. However, 20 years after the 1995 Association Agreement, which initiated a free trade zone on industrial products, the Tunisian industry is in great difficulty. [5] As a consequence, brutally removing the State’s protection from the service sector, the main sector in Tunisia, could seriously damage it, having a negative impact on jobs. Even if the removal of barriers is done gradually, both civil society organisations and trade unions, and even employers are worried. [6] We may indeed underline that the competitiveness of the Tunisian economy is much lower than that of the European economy. In the agricultural sector, it is even 7 times less. [7] Two other elements reflect this inequality between the two parties. First, the EU suggests that Tunisia adopt European norms and standards in various fields. [8] Such a change in standards will have a cost, which will have to be borne solely by Tunisia when European companies will not have any effort to make. And these standards, designed for Europe, are not necessarily adapted to Tunisia. On the other hand, the DCFTA project would allow service providers or investors to come directly to Tunisia freely, whereas Tunisians must systematically go through a visa application procedure. However, in its 2015 trade strategy, “Trade for All”, the European Commission states that “to engage in international trade in services, companies must establish markets abroad in order to serve new local customers”. [9] This means that it is very important for Europeans that their service providers can come and settle in other countries. But is not possible for Tunisian service providers to travel to Europe without going through visa application procedures with an uncertain outcome, a blatant inequality both in terms of freedom and economic opportunities that the DCFTA do not plan to correct In these respects, the project does not seem to benefit Tunisia in the immediate future but rather to serve the interests of European companies, or even to further deteriorate certain aspects of the Tunisian economy. How did the EU come to the point where Tunisia agreed to discuss such a proposal?