Beauty industry (cosmetics, etc.)

2nd Tunisia-Korea-Africa Business Forum (Cosmetics Sector)
Embassy of Tunisia

The cosmetics sector, which is one of the business discovery areas of this event (5.8-9), is a sector that is expected to develop and expand overseas sales of Korean domestic brands with excellent quality, price, and image marketing competitiveness, considering the growth trend of the African cosmetics consumption market (10% on average per year), including Tunisia, so we hope that relevant companies will actively consider participating in the event.

1. Analyzing Opportunities to Enter Local Markets

A. New product development and sales expansion through manufacturing

For cosmetics manufacturing companies that are promoting the discovery of new materials for new product development, when reviewing and planning their entry into Tunisia, they should consider the following factors: △ low labor costs, △ low production costs (local cultivation, harvesting, and extraction), △ various natural materials unique to the region (aromatic crops added to perfumes, deodorants, etc, or medicinal plants used in the production of functional cosmetics such as whitening effects), and △ government incentives for investment in special development zones (inland and mountainous regions in the northwestern and midwestern parts of Tunisia, which are classified as extremely poor areas).

As a representative example, cactus oil, which has excellent antioxidant activity and is added to anti-aging products, is exported to France for about 1,000 euros per liter, and various extracts such as argan oil and lavender essence oil are also exported to French cosmetics and perfume manufacturers (expensive and famous brands), according to local industry players, WHEREAS, Tunisia has the potential to be a geographically and strategically advantageous production base (utilizing FTAs with these markets) for Korean cosmetics manufacturers aiming to export to Africa, the Middle East, and Europe, especially considering that the global cosmetics consumption market trend is moving towards organic cosmetics using natural ingredients.

B. Entering the color cosmetics market using the K-beauty trend

Due to the spread of the K-pop and K-drama craze in Europe, interest in and affinity for K-beauty among young women in their 20s and 30s has naturally increased in Tunisia, and some domestic mid- to low-priced branded cosmetics are sold in Tunisia, but these are either imported from France by local specialized cosmetics distributors or sold through limited distribution channels by local K-pop fans who purchase them when touring Korea and then sell them online, which limits the introduction of various Korean products, so there is potential for our company to enter the market.
Despite the gradual expansion of the demand for Korean cosmetics in Tunisia, local women generally use only color-centered makeup, which is very different from young women in East Asia, such as Korea, who use a variety of products for skin care, so it would be beneficial for Korean cosmetics manufacturers to focus on selling makeup and color products rather than skin care products when considering entering the African and Middle Eastern markets.

The Embassy will continue to reach out to local collaborating organizations, experts, and relevant companies to provide them with a list of desired domestic makeup imports, information on locally produced natural ingredients (including efficacy) and unit prices that may be of interest to Korean manufacturers, and research data on major cosmetics consumption markets in Africa, including Côte d’Ivoire.