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Global employment briefing: Benin, Senegal, Tunisia, January 2018

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A round-up of recent employment-related developments in Benin, Senegal and Tunisia:

Republic of Benin: Changes to hiring and terminating employment contracts

A new law will govern relations between employers and workers exercising their professional activities by setting out the conditions and the procedure for hiring and terminating employment contracts in the Republic of Benin.

Legislation provides for clarity on trial (probationary) periods

For a long time, the legal system had been unclear as to the supervision of trial periods in employment contracts. This has changed and the legislation is clear: the trial period must be precisely defined in the contract of employment.

Fixed-term employment contracts

Previously, employers were required to move employees onto permanent contracts (CDI) after a fixed term contract. This requirement is removed under the new law.

The CDI (permanent employment contract) is now open to non-Beninese

Previously, foreigners could only sign fixed-term employment contracts. This has changed and the law allows them to work under a contract of indefinite duration.

Senegal: The government remains on a promise of job creation

With the objective of simplifying business start-up procedures in Senegal, the government has implemented a new policy as part of the Reform Program to Improve the Business Environment and Competitiveness.

In order to allow domestic and foreign investors to set up their businesses, Senegal has initiated a series of reforms including the simplification of administrative procedures. This approach is part of the reform program to improve the business environment and it has accelerated the pace of business creation in Senegal.

Tunisia: new sectoral collective agreements

A number of changes to sectoral collective agreements were agreed and decreed by the Minister of Social Affairs between September and December 2017 affecting the following sectors: foundry, metallurgy and mechanical engineering; written and electronic press; plastic processing industry; building and public works; construction materials industry.

Tunisia : New law combating violence against women adopted in the Assembly

Among the new measures contained in the new law, the Penal Code is amended to remove the impunity for rapists (previously, it provided a possibility for the rapist to escape a prison sentence if he married his victim).

Now, anyone who has sex with a minor under 16 years with consent is punishable by 6 years imprisonment. Anyone who has sex with a girl over 16 years and under 18 years with her consent is punishable by 5 years imprisonment. The penalties are doubled if the person is close to the victim or has influence over her.

The age of sexual maturity was raised to 16 years from 13 years.