Algeria On The Move Out Of Oil-Reliance

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The Algerian President, Abdelmadjid Tebboune on Tuesday reiterated his government’s determination to move the country’s economy from oil-reliance to being a diversified economy.

Tebboune in a meeting with the prime minister as well as energy, finance, mines, agriculture and trade ministers, discussed his intention to embark on a new “economic and social revival plan”, a statement from the presidency said.

Tennpime who was elected in December, has repeatedly vowed to reform the oil-dependent economy by developing the non-energy sector and seeking new funding sources.

This has become imperative for many oil-dependent economies especially as they grapple with the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. The drop in oil and gas earnings during the coronavirus pandemic forced the government to cut public spending and delay planned investment projects in sectors including energy.

 “Building a new real economy requires launching initiatives and liberating them from bureaucracy and reviewing existing legal texts,” the statement quoted Tebboune as saying at the meeting.

“No distinction must be made between the public and private sectors in creating wealth and jobs,” he added. The new plan will keep unchanged the country’s subsidy policy. The government subsidizes almost everything from basic foodstuffs to housing, medicine and fuel.

“This plan must preserve the social nature of the state and protect the purchasing power of citizens, especially the fragile class,” Tebboune said.

The authorities will unveil more details of the plan after final government approval in the coming days before being submitted to businessmen for debate, the statement said.

The plan is coming amid preparations for a referendum later this year on amendments to the constitution to boost freedoms and give parliament more powers as part of political reforms.

The move by the President Abdelmadjid Tebboune comes after over a year of mass protests demanding the withdrawal of the ruling elite and prosecution of people involved in corruption, forcing veteran president Abdelaziz Bouteflika to end his 20-year rule in April 2019.

Subsequently, the government banned the protests in mid-March to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Peace Obi with Agency Report


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